So much for that perfect season.
Glendale Mountain Ridge had its previously undefeated season come to a rather quick end Friday night as Red Mountain stunned the No. 2-seeded Mountain Lions 21-7 in the first round of the 5A playoffs.
Other than the first five minutes of the game, one would have thought Red Mountain, the 15th seed, was the undefeated team. Red Mountain thoroughly dominated Mountain Ridge on offense and defense. Red Mountain will play Gilbert next week in the quarterfinals.
“From the very beginning of the week everyone on this team knew we could beat those guys no matter what seed we were,'' Red Mountain linebacker Aaron Fernandez said.
Fernandez was part of a front seven that manhandled the Mountain Ridge offense. Its best play was quarterback Cody Rohlwing dropping back to pass and then scrambling for yards.
He didn't always elude the Red Mountain pass rush. Led by Fernandez, Red Mountain had six sacks.
The only two times Mountain Ridge moved the ball in the second half, it turned it over. Fullback Dustin Graham fumbled at the Red Mountain 19-yard line, and Rohlwing fumbled at the Red Mountain 1-yard line.
“Our kids were a little more physical than their kids,'' Red Mountain coach Jim Jones said. “We laid some licks on them.''
Going against a quality defense, Red Mountain (7-4) decided to throw the ball more than usual, and it worked. The 21 points were the most scored against Mountain Ridge all season. Mountain Ridge (10-1) had three shutouts during the year. Quarterback Jason Argos threw for 143 yards, and the passing game eventually opened up the running game.
Red Mountain, led by Montrell Boyston, had 195 yards on the ground. Boyston had 119 yards and scored two touchdowns. He now has over 1,300 yards and 19 touchdowns on the season.
With the score tied 7-7 at the half, Red Mountain used a short kickoff that Mountain Ridge did not cover, and Red Mountain's Andrew Jarrett fell on the ball. Two plays later, Boyston scored from 22 yards out to give Red Mountain the lead.
It appeared Mountain Ridge would dominate the game from the beginning. Mountain Ridge stopped Red Mountain on three straight plays and then scored on its fourth offensive play.
It was a 25-yard screen pass from Rohlwing to wingback Tim Ham.
But Red Mountain answered that score with one of its own. The Lions drove 66 yards on five plays. Argos hit wide receiver Greg Bird with a 27-yard slant pass that resulted in a touchdown.