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One question regarding 2019 Open Division runner-up Saguaro entering this season was who would play quarterback for the Sabercats.

Coach Jason Mohns has two Power 5-level signal-callers in senior Xander Werner and junior Ridge Docekal. Werner, though, also has the potential to be an all-conference tight end, which the Sabercats put to good use in their season-opening 27-0 victory over Brophy Prep.

Werner ran for two touchdowns while under center and caught five passes from Docekal, including a 27-yarder that set up a short touchdown pass from Docekal to Josh Baxter.

“At the end of the day, if we’re making plays and putting points on the board, whether that be at tight end or quarterback, I’m happy,” Werner said in a postgame interview posted to the program’s Twitter feed. “Our end goal is winning the Open.”

Saguaro, which is on the SBLive Power 25 radar but yet to enter the rankings, got off to a late start to its season. The Sabercats’ Week 1 rivalry matchup with Chaparral got derailed when two Firebirds tested positive for COVID-19 in the run-up to the game.

Their defense took advantage of a Brophy Prep offense without junior quarterback EJ Warner, who suffered a leg injury in a Week 1 loss to Notre Dame Prep. The Sabercats held the Broncos to minus-7 yards of total offense, posted 19 tackles for loss, and got a game-turning 51-yard interception return for a score by junior safety Jordan Ginnis.

“We love the defense, especially after a game like this, where our offense was not getting things going like we should,” Werner said. “The defense bailed us out. They kept the goose on the board.”

Docekal finished 10 of 12 for 121 yards; Werner was 4 of 7 for 26 yards and ran for 107 yards on nine attempts. Juniors Tristan Monday and Miles Crutchley had nine tackles apiece, and senior Darrion Dalton added eight, including five for loss.

— René Ferrán; photo by Heather Hackett

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