Desert Mountain shocks Pinnacle with 35-point fourth quarter - East Valley Tribune: Pinnacle

Desert Mountain shocks Pinnacle with 35-point fourth quarter

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Posted: Saturday, October 22, 2011 12:10 am

Desert Mountain's season is over and its playoff hopes have long since faded away.

Pinnacle looked to continue its undefeated season.

But neither team played its part Friday as host Desert Mountain did the unthinkable with a 35-point fourth quarter to erase a 21-point Pinnacle lead as the Wolves upset the Pioneers, 35-28.

"I got no excuse, they outplayed us in the second half," Pinnacle coach Dana Zupke said. "We came out flat and I don't think that we ever really recovered."

Pinnacle (8-1) didn't play or act like a team that was undefeated as it allowed Desert Mountain to make big play after big play in the fourth quarter and maybe got caught looking ahead to a colossal matchup with Division I power Brophy (9-0) this Friday.

"This wasn't the same team that played last week or the week before," Zupke said. "I don't think we were looking ahead at all. I don't know... I don't have any answers right now."

Desert Mountain (3-6) was more than willing to play the spoiler but it was in the manner that it pulled of the upset that is astonishing.

The Wolves overcame a 21-point deficit and Cody Zimmerman put the icing on the upset with a 32-yard interception return for a touchdown with 1:33 remaining to seal the victory.

"I saw the out route all night and I was getting beat on it and I just finally jumped on the ball," Zimmerman said. "I put my hands out and it just stuck in there and I ran as hard as I could and didn't look back, I was running for the end zone. I was surprised he threw it... I was surprised he didn't see me."

The Wolves trailed 21-0 after Pinnacle's Evan Tompkins scored on a 2-yard run with 11:06 left in the game and most in attendance figured Desert Mountain would roll over and die.

"We were watching film and they were getting lackadaisical with some of the teams they were playing and coach (Tabor) told us that we had the potential and if we wanted it, we had to go out and get it," Zimmerman said.

Desert Mountain did exactly that.

After looking pedestrian for three quarters, the Wolves offense woke up and Kyle Allen caught fire.

The quarterback's confidence grew after he threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Alec Waltman. Following a Pinnacle three-and-out, Allen found a streaking Mark Andrews for a 59-yard strike that cut the lead to 21-14 with 7:53 remaining.

"Through the whole game I was having a rough game," Allen said. "Coaches and players kept coming up to me and telling me to keep my head up... I just stepped it up and got on a streak at the end and it kept going and going."

Pinnacle tried to quell the Desert Mountain rally as Matt Dietz broke a 52-yard run to put the Pioneers ahead, 28-14, with 6:08 left.

"We wanted to finish strong (this season)," Desert Mountain coach Tony Tabor said. "I knew we could move the football, it was just a matter of doing it."

Desert Mountain scored on its next drive as Allen found Thomas Mauriello for a 5-yard TD pass. The defense then forced another three-and-out and Allen capped a 9-play drive that was aided by Pinnacle personal foul penalty with an 11-yard TD pass to Zimmerman to tie the game, 28-28, with 1:48 remaining.

Pinnacle still had a chance to escape the upset but Zimmerman wouldn't allow it.

"I never been down 21 nothing as a head coach and win a game so that is the biggest game I have ever won in my life when being down that much," Tabor said. "I am just so proud of these kids."

Pinnacle had one last drive but didn't make one first down and turned the ball over to Desert Mountain as the Wolves ran out the clock.

"This is a wake-up call for us," Zupke said. "We are going to the playoffs and maybe that is what we needed."

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[Stats Courtesy of MaxPreps]