You knew that no matter where the Mountain Pointe Pride were seeded, the defending state champions would not be an easy out.
As the six seed in the division I bracket, they went on the road against the third seeded Pinnacle Pioneers and put on a clinic in a 56-10 win moving them on to the semi-finals.
For the Pride, the game was won in all three phases of the game. On offense they got a touchdown run on their first offensive play from scrimmage from Tyrek Cross. On the first play of the second half they got a kick return for a touchdown from Tyree Shivers and they received a pick six from safety Isaiah Pola-Mao which was one of his two interceptions.
But it was the defense that really set the tone which was able to hold the high-powered Pinnacle Pioneers offense, who scored 30 or more points in all but one game this season. The one game they didn’t, they scored 29. Brian Lewerke and company was never able to get into a rhythm and the pass rush was relentless.
“Our defense played awesome,” said Mountain Pointe Head Coach Norris Vaughn. “That was the story of the game. We mixed our coverages up, our defense did a great job, our coaches did a great job preparing them. I am really pleased with the way we played.”
Mountain Pointe knew that the road to return to the state title might have to go through great offenses like Pinnacle or Chandler. So to make sure they best utilized their athletes, the Pride had their star running back Paul Lucas play at defensive back to chase around Pinnacle’s fast receivers in Cules Rose and Adam Turner though he had not played a snap on that side of the ball in two years on varsity.
“Two weeks ago we started to do a little bit of man drills and stuff like that,” explained Lucas after the game. “So I have been playing it for like three weeks now in practice and it was just for this game.”
The Pride are back in the state semi-finals once again and will have a big matchup with the Chandler Wolves next week. The two teams faced off back on week five which saw the Pride win 45-42 in what was one of the most exciting games of the regular season. This rematch doesn’t expect to be short on fireworks either.