Mountain Pointe’s Gary Bragg runs past Desert Vista’s Colby Humphrey in the first half at Desert Vista High School in Phoenix, Ariz. on September 28, 2017. (Photo: Patrick Breen/The Republic)
Mountain Pointe grinds out win over Desert Vista in Ahwatukee Bowl
With emotions playing a part in the Ahwatukee Bowl, Phoenix Mountain Pointe fumbled on the opening kickoff. It had a rash of penalties, including a personal foul that helped a Phoenix Desert Vista scoring drive.
But, in the end, visiting Mountain Pointe prevailed 21-16, behind stellar defense, quarterback Nick Wallerstedt’s ability to escape defenders, defensive lineman Shomari Hayes’ wreaking havoc in the backfield and another great rushing game by Jakim McKinney.
McKinney, coming off a 200-yard game, whisked away Desert Vista’s momentum with a 61-yard scoring run with 7:53 left to give the Pride a 21-10 lead.
Desert Vista (4-2) scored on the last play – a 60-yard strike from Derek Kline to sophomore Tyson Grubbs – to make it look closer.
It was the sixth consecutive season that second-ranked (6A) Mountain Pointe (5-1) beat Desert Vista. The last time Desert Vista beat Mountain Pointe was the 2011 season when it won the state championship.
“I’m proud of my guys,” Desert Vista coach Dan Hinds said.
It was the sixth straight year Mountain Pointe beat its Ahwatukee rival in football
Junior RB Jakim McKinney, 5-foot-7, 160 pounds, ran for 154 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries. He had 200 yards and four TDs on 19 carries last week in a 58-34 win over Phoenix Pinnacle.
- Mountain Pointe senior defensive lineman Shomari Hayes, 6-2, 290, was in Desert Vista’s backfield much of the night, making life miserable for Kline. He had three sacks and slowed down Desert Vista’s run game.
- Wallerstedt, a junior quarterback, gave Mountain Pointe a 14-3 lead on a 15-yard scramble early in the second quarter. He was able to extend drives most of the night with his left, escaping trouble and finding the sideline after first-down runs.
- Bragg, who missed the second half of last season with a knee injury, once again showed great burst. He gave Mountain Pointe a 7-3 lead with a 34-yard run after Desert Vista cashed in on Mountain Pointe’s fumble on a kickoff to start the game with Matt Lewis’ 42-yard field goal.
Mountain Pointe coach Norris Vaughan lauded the play of Desert Vista junior defensive tackle Brett Johnson, 6-3, 250, who was key to clogging the middle and slowing down Mountain Pointe’s power run game and making Wallerstedt really work for tough yardage.
- “Too many mistakes, too much emotion,” Vaughan said. “We didn’t play well, and they did.”
- “They were blitzing and I got some good blocks and I was able to break it,” McKinney on his long TD run.
Stat of the game
Desert Vista took the second-half kickoff and drove 87 yards on 13 plays, scoring on Travon Offutt’s 4-yard run that cut the score to 14-10. Kline completed three passes on the drive and was helped after an 11-yard run on a late hit by Mountain Pointe that gave the Thunder another 15 yards.
Desert Vista plays host to Gilbert next week, while Mountain Pointe plays host to Gilbert Highland.
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