Mountain Pointe 3
By Erik T. Masingill ’12
Although the Brophy football team led No. 15 seeded Mountain Pointe by just 10-3 at halftime, the Broncos scored three times in the second half to avoid an upset and advance to the quarterfinals with a 28-3 victory Nov. 4 at Phoenix College.
“We were winning, we made adjustments, and that’s the whole key,” said head coach Mr. Scooter Molander of their response in the second half. “Our staff did a nice job there, we challenged our guys, and they responded to the challenge.”
The game started in a heavy dust storm, and as the dust cleared rain started to fall. The National Weather Service reported wind gusts in the Phoenix area up to 61 mph from the southwest.
After the Pride had a three-and-out on the opening drive, Brophy scored first on their offensive drive when Zach Hudson ’12 kicked a 24-yard field goal to gain a quick 3-0 lead with 6:29 left in the first.
Mountain Pointe’s defense combined for three offside penalties on the drive accounting for 15 additional yards for the Broncos.
With a minute left in the first, the Broncos scored on the second play of their drive with a D’ Amani Grayer ’13 66-yard touchdown run down the sideline to provide a 10-0 lead.
After a Brophy punt, Mountain Pointe started a drive on their own 10-yard line. On the second play, running back Dillan Johnson carried the ball for a 54-yard gain to Brophy’s 32-yard line.
That set up a Ryan Sheehan 25-yard field goal with 2:18 left in the first half to make the score going into halftime 10-3.
A Devon Allen ’13 punt return in the third quarter to the Mountain Pointe 20-yard line set up a four-play drive for the Broncos that resulted in a six-yard touchdown pass from Tyler Bruggman ’13 to Fred Gammage ’12.
A missed extra point meant a 16-3 lead for Brophy with 5:36 left in the quarter.
A 46-yard pass from Bruggman to Gammage along with two penalties by the Pride led to Brophy’s next score: a two-yard rush by Robert Relf ’13 with 1:24 left in the third.
The Broncos missed the two-point conversion, but still led 22-3 at the end of the third.
The following kickoff return for the Pride resulted in a fumble recovered by Lee Larcher ’12 at the Brophy 33-yard line. The Broncos lost the ball in a botched snap that was recovered by the Pride at their own 32-yard line.
The Broncos scored on their next possession with a Grayer 18-yard touchdown run that took him from nearly sideline to sideline with 8:27 left in the game. Another missed extra point meant a 28-3 lead, but also the final score.
Another turnover on downs for Mountain Pointe along with the offense running out the clock officially ended the game.
Bruggman went 5 for 18 for 86 yards passing along with a touchdown and no interceptions.
Gammage caught three passes for 74 yards along with one touchdown and a 13-yard pass to Allen.
Allen caught two passes for 27 yards and carried the ball five times for 51 yards.
Grayer had 13 rushes for 105 yards and two touchdowns.
The defense caused four three-and-out drives and two turnovers for the Pride.
“We did a nice job of gain tackling tonight,” Mr. Molander said of the defense. “We made some very nice open field tackles. They (Mountain Pointe) ran a screen in the second half, and we came up and got that.”
Mr. Molander also said Mountain Pointe made for a challenging game.
“They’re not a 15-seed. Everybody realized that. That was a challenging first round opponent for us. We won 28-3.”
Grayer said that the team focused more on a running game than a passing game for this matchup.
“Our philosophy prior to this game has been pass to score and run to win. But this game we switched up to pass to win and run to score because we knew how important the run game would be.”
The No. 2 seeded Broncos will take on No. 7 Basha Thursday, Nov. 10 at Phoenix College in the quarter finals. Basha defeated their first-round opponent Tucson 55-0.
The two teams have not played each other since three seasons ago.