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Red Mountain's Aeron Carr #9 breaks through the Brophy defense on a touchdown run during the third quarter of their state playoff game on Friday, Nov. 9, 2012. [Ralph Freso/Special to Tribune]
Red Mountain receiver Aeron Carr cuts back through the Brophy defense on a screen pass during the second quarter of their football game on Friday, Sept. 7, 2012 in Phoenix. [Ralph Freso/For the Tribune]
Red Mountain receiver Aeron Carr looks for some yards after a reception against Brophy during the second quarter of their football game on Friday, Sept. 7, 2012 in Phoenix. [Ralph Freso/For the Tribune]
Red MountainÕs receiver Aeron Carr is up ended while taking on Red Mountain, Friday, Oct. 5, 2012 at Red Mountain High School. [Brant Clinard/ Special to Tribune]
Desert Ridge players Vita Taifu and Anthony Hovorka swarm over Red Mountain's Aeron Carr during the Desert Ridge's win over Red Mountain, Friday, Sept. 28, 2012 at Desert Ridge High School.
Red Mountain's Aeron Carr canÕt come up with the ball while Desert RidgeÕs Anthony Hovorka defends, Friday, Sept. 28, 2012 at Desert Ridge High School. [Brant Clinard/ Special to Tribune]
Red Mountain quarterback Mason Thorman returns for his senior season, along with leading receiver Aeron Carr as the Lions believe this is their best team in Ron Wisniewski's three years as coach.
Red Mountain receiver Aeron Carr,right, is unable to come up with a pass thrown to him as Desert Ridge's Ruben Rodriguez goes for the ball also in the second half of play, Thursday, Nov. 10, 2011 in Mesa. [Tim Hacker, Tribune]
Brophy defensive back Jordan Robinson #33 knocks a potential first down pass away from Red Mountain receiver Aeron Carr #9 deep in Bronco territory during the fourth quarter of their state playoff game on Friday, Nov. 9, 2012. [Ralph Freso/Special to Tribune]
Red Mountain quarterback Mason Thorman protects the ball as he is hit by Brophy defender Kaleb Mosier during the first quarter of their football game on Friday, Sept. 7, 2012 in Phoenix. Red Mountain receiver Aeron Carr cuts back through the Brophy defense on a screen pass during the second quarter of their football game on Friday, Sept. 7 in Phoenix. Red Mountain won, 33-31, in Week 3, but the Broncos get another shot when the two teams meet again Friday.
The Mountain Lions came out on top in this matchup last year but haven’t yet shown the same type of offensive firepower following the graduation of quarterback Mason Thorman and wide receivers Drake Pierre and Aeron Carr. Westview (2-0) has played well in its first two contests and is looking for a victory to solidify itself as a top Division I team. Red Mountain (0-2) has faced a tough schedule, and another loss would be a tough blow, especially considering Brophy, Chaparral, Desert Mountain, Desert Ridge and Mountain View are still on the schedule. It’s early, but this a crucial contest for Red Mountain.
Prediction: Westview 20, Red Mountain 17
-- Kyle Odegard
Pinnacle grabbed one of the final spots in the Tribune’s preseason top-10 rankings, although Red Mountain was also squarely in that mix. The Mountain Lions were better last season but must replace key offensive contributors Mason Thorman, Drake Pierre and Aeron Carr. Pinnacle returns more key pieces, led by running back Josh Hoekstra, defensive lineman Cole Neubauer and wide receiver Daniel Galindo. It will also be the first start for promising quarterback Brian Lewerke, who picked up a scholarship offer from Arizona State this summer. Red Mountain has strong participation numbers, and there are bound to be promising players who take over main roles in 2013. This game should help show where the Mountain Lions reside among the top teams in Division I.
Prediction: Pinnacle 24, Red Mountain 20
-- Kyle Odegard
Jalen Brown, Mountain Pointe: The defensive back had an interception, a fumble recovery late that turned the tide in the Pride’s win over Hamilton and had five catches for 52 yards on offense.
Call it a quick start to the football season for Red Mountain.
Missed opportunities, made opportunities, late-game drama, special teams swings. A neighborhood rivalry.
Outlook: It might difficult for a school with regular playoff appearances and 3,300 students to be "lying in the weeds," but Red Mountain is doing everything it can to not be seen (relatively speaking).
Red Mountain at Desert Ridge
This week's top East Valley high school football performances:
Fifth-seeded Red Mountain routed 12th-seeded Buena 45-6 in the first round of the Division I playoffs on Friday.
Clarence Clark called it being on a team.
There was the usual residue a bad loss left behind, but Red Mountain won't panic, re-invent its wheels or other extremes.
Earlier this week, Red Mountain football coach Ron Wisniewski spent time downplaying Friday’s matchup with Brophy, the top-ranked team in the state and one of the favorites to win the Division I title.
According to the respective coaches from Red Mountain and Mesa High, the reason their teams are heading in opposite directions is easy: execution.
Incredibly, this football regular season is halfway done. Here is a look at the notable teams, players and moments from the first five weeks of 2012: