GameNight: Mountain Pointe's transformation continues with big win - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Game Day

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GameNight: Mountain Pointe's transformation continues with big win

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Posted: Friday, September 27, 2013 11:11 pm

The Mountain Pointe football transformation won’t be complete until a state title has been won.

Until then there are indicators of where the process stands.

The latest sign – an impressive 37-27 win Friday night over perennial champion No. 2 Hamilton – is pretty telling.

About 13 months ago, No. 1 Mountain Pointe (6-0) needed a win over the Huskies, a team it had never beat, to get something started and pulled it off to ignite a run to the Pride’s first state title appearance before falling to Hamilton (4-1).

This one, while celebrated by the Pride, was fully expected. That’s a monumental shift in their belief system, one that clearly points to Mountain Pointe being at a different level in 2013.

“We were searching for something last year,” said senior linebacker Trey Lauer, who had important caused fumble in the first half that led to a 24-6 halftime lead. “Now we know what we can do. We knew this was our game. It was just a matter of going out and doing it.”

It wasn’t a shift in power just yet.

"Take it from somebody who knows a little bit about football, they're pretty good," Pride coach Norris Vaughan said. "I'm telling you, they ain't dead."

Hamilton will be better come November, but the way Mountain Pointe went about it - scoring the most points the Huskies have allowed since 2008 (35-16 loss Centennial) – was something that doesn’t happen.

“They were the better than us,” Hamilton coach Steve Belles said. “Bottom line is they played a better game. They made the big plays when they had to. I don’t think since I’ve been here we’ve had a kickoff return (for a score) against us.

“They got after it. I thought we competed like heck tonight, but we’d have to play a heck of a lot better to beat them.”

While it was a total team effort for the Pride, two individual talents showed why Mountain Pointe is considered one of the fastest and most athletic teams this state has seen.

Pride senior wide receiver Jalen Brown, who saw single coverage probably for the first time since his freshman year, had two huge scores while junior Paul Lucas (15 for 143) was electric with a 97-yard kickoff return to push the Pride out to a 17-6 lead and added the capper – a 70-yard run where he made two great moves (one in the hole and one in the second level) to cement the win.

Brown’s second touchdown – a short out route on third down that he turned into a 37-yard touchdown after he broke a tackle – opened the second half scoring and reestablished the Pride’s control of the game after neither team really did much early in the third quarter.

“We had to be patient because we knew we’d get it going again,” said Brown, who had four catches for 96 yards. “With the defense they were playing we knew we could get some big plays with the speed we have.”

Hamilton showed its usual grit and got some scores late to erase the Pride’s lead of 18 points in the second and third quarters.

“We didn’t have big enough plays,” said Hamilton’s Tyrell Smith, who had 152 yards rushing. “Last year we started out 0-2 and it is the same kind of thing where we are going to finish out and hopefully see them in championship again.”

Mountain Pointe, which won lost eight games in 2008 and just 11 since, is clearly in prime position to do just that.

“This was big cause of where we sit, because of power points and it is big because it gives us an idea of what we can accomplish,” Vaughan said.

Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or Follow him on Twitter @JSkodaAFN.

Box score

Mountain Pointe 37, Hamilton 27

H 3 10 7 7 -27

MP 10 14 7 6 – 37



H - Brown 43 FG

MP - Sheehan 23 FG

MP - Brown 37 pass from Hinojosa, Sheehan kick


Ham - No. 96 28 FG

MP - Lucas 96 kick return TD, Sheehan kick

MP - Leonard 1 run, Sheehan kick

Ham - Greathouse 30 INT return, Brown kick


MP - Brown 37 pass from Hinojosa, Sheehan kick

Ham - Williams 1 pass from Sasso, Brown


MP - Lucas 70 run, Sheehan kick

Ham - Mayberry 6 pass from Sasso, 2-pt pass good

Team stats

                              H                MP

First downs           17               12

Rushing:              35-171      36-231

Passing:         12-33-2-132   4-9-2-1-96

Fumbles/lost:      1-1                 0-0

Penalties:             4-44             9-77

Individual stats


H - Tyrell Smith 26-152. Acles 4-26, Sasso 2-minus 11. MP - Paul Lucas 15-143 yards, Leonard 5-17, Townsend 4-34, Hinojosa 4-24, Brown 1-2, Ellis 2-8.


H – Sasso 12-33-2-132. MP - Hinojosa 4-9-2-1-96.


H - Elijah Williams 5-103, Smith 3-28, Acles 2-17. MP – Brown 4-96.

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Jason P. Skoda
  • Jason P. Skoda
  • Sports writer
  • Resident sports writer at the Ahwatukee Foothills News

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