Joiner leads Cienega to brink of 1st state title

Joiner leads Cienega to brink of 1st state title

VAIL, AZ (Tucson News Now) - What a return it has been.

After sitting out the 2015 high school football season at a local charter school, Jamarye Joiner has returned to lead Cienega to within one win of the school's second state championship game appearance.

The top seeded Bobcats will face #5 seed Peoria Centennial Friday night in a Conference 5A state semifinal game at Tucson High's Gridley Stadium.

Joiner has scored 29 touchdowns this season for Cienega (12-0), 13 rushing and 16 throwing as one of the Bobcats two quarterbacks.

The junior transfer has completed 58% of his passes this season for 1,612 yards with just four interceptions.

The all-around athlete has run for 747 yards, averaging over eight yards per carry and he also caught one dynamic 20-yard pass against Tucson High that might go down as one of the top highlights of this 2016 high school football season.

Joiner is in his first season at Cienega after he was expelled last spring from Salpointe Catholic.

He had played varsity as a freshman for the Lancers in 2014 throwing for 203 yards, running for 214 yards and three touchdowns and catching 22 passes for 345 yards and three more scores. He finished third on the team that season in total yards.

Joiner did not play at all in 2015 after being re-assigned from Salpointe Catholic to a charter school for what was termed administrative reasons.

The 6'1 195-pound athlete was listed prior to this current season as the Class of 2018's #9 prospect in the state by the Arizona Republic.

Cienega last played for a state championship in 2011 when the Bobcats lost the Division II Final to Scottsdale Chaparral (37-14).

The Coyotes (11-1) are two-time defending state champions.

Centennial won the Division II title in 2014 and then moved up and won the Division I championship last season.

They've played in eight state championship games since 2005 with five titles including a stretch of three in a row between 2006-2008.

The Coyotes beat Sunnyside 34-0 to win their first state title (Class 5A Division II) in 2006. They are the team Ironwood Ridge beat 27-3 in 2012 for the Nighthawks lone state championship.

Copyright 2016 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.