It was a big matchup between two of Arizona’s best in Division I football as Red Mountain visited Desert Ridge in an east Mesa matchup.
Red Mountain entered the game undefeated and ranked second in Division I power rankings. But that would change as Desert Ridge handed the Mountain Lions their first loss of the season; 31-8 the final score.
For The Jaguars, it was all about their running attack. They dominated the line of scrimmage and were able to produce long drives all on the ground leading to a 17-0 halftime lead.
“We’ve got a stable of running backs and we used them and I’m real proud of them,” said Desert Ridge head coach Jeremy Hathcock after the game.
Coach Hathcock was so confident in the run, that they only threw the ball once the entire game. JJ Husar led the Desert Ridge rushing attack with monster runs of 49 yards, which led to a touchdown, and 59 yards. He had 209 yards and two touchdowns on the night. Junior Danny Siaumau added a score as well.
“We just thought if we could keep the ball away from their quarterback it would give us a chance to win,” mentioned Hathcock. “We did a little but more than that. We proved were a pretty tough running team and we might have found something. But I’m really proud of our offensive line.”
Red Mountain’s offense has been among the best in the state after the first month of the season led by quarterback Mason Thorman and receiver Drake Pierre. But the Desert Ridge defense managed the keep this high-octane offense in tact.
“We played them twice last year and we had five turnovers and we had one turnover so I think we flipped the table a little bit,” Hathcock added. “Without all the sloppy penalties on us I thought our defense was phenomenal…One of the best defensive performances I’ve seen.”
Desert Ridge has bounced back in style after a tough loss at Hamilton two weeks ago. They move to 5-1 on the season and have a big matchup with Basha next week.
This should only be seen as a small hick-up for Red Mountain who has been off to a stellar start to the season. What better for the Mountain Lions to bounce back with a win over rival Mountain View next week.