Mountain Pointe’s football team has shown it can come from behind to win this season.
The Pride has done that three times so far in this 7-0 season. They came back against Chandler Basha and in the Ahwatukee Bowl against Desert Vista.
But neither was as dramatic as last week when they rallied from deficits twice against Mesa Desert Ridge.
The Pride were behind, 28-0, at halftime against the Jaguars and then, after getting even at 28-all, fell behind 34-28 in the fourth quarter. De’Andre Currie’s 40-yard touchdown run and Jon Mora’s extra point conversion gave the Pride a 35-34 victory.
“I’ve never been that far behind and won,” said Mountain Pointe veteran coach Norris Vaughan. “I think everyone was ready to tar and feather us at halftime.”
Vaughan would rather the Pride not do that again when they host Mesa Westwood tonight in an East Valley Region game at Karl Kiefer Stadium.
“We’ll be lucky if we beat them,” Vaughan said.
It may sound like a little bit of locker room coach’s talk to think that an undefeated team that is ranked second in the state 5A-I power ratings should be concerned about a team with a 5-3 record and an 11th seed in the ratings.
However, Vaughan said the Warriors have been battle tested by some of the best this season.
“When you look at who beat them this year you see some pretty good teams,’ Vaughan added. “And they almost beat Marcos.”
The Warriors lost to Mesa Red Mountain (47-24) in the season opener, fell to Mesa (28-6) and scared undefeated Tempe Marcos de Niza 14-6 three weeks ago.
Red Mountain is 5-2 and rated sixth in the power ratings while Mesa (5-3) is ranked fifth and Marcos leads the 5A-II pack.
“They’re big, fast, have a running game and a passing game and run a spread offense with a lot of sweeps,” Vaughan said. “They’ve got two or three really good running backs, like we do, and a quarterback who can run the ball.”
Kyler Mickelson, Valenco Gray and Billy Sueing give the Warriors a three-pronged running attack while quarterback Juan Zazueta can throw the ball like he did in the Warrior’s 45-14 win against Mesa Skyline. Zazueta also ran back an interception for a touchdown. Sueing also scored twice, on a 5-yard run and another interception.
Offensively the Pride counter with Currie, who has run for 1,112 yards and scored 15 touchdowns this season, as well as Davon Jones, who has gained 960 yards through the middle of the line and scored 17 touchdowns.
Jones was also effective playing in the Pride secondary against Desert Ridge’s passing game last week.