Senior quarterback Michael Hinojosa threw four touchdown passes and the Pride Defense forced three first-half turnovers en route to a 48-7 drubbing of the Red Mountain Mountain Lions in the quarterfinals of the Division I high school football playoffs Friday night in Phoenix.
Hinojosa netted TD passes to two senior wideouts on his first two attempts of the night – a five-yard toss to Emmanuel Butler and a 27-yard catch-and-run by Jalen Brown. On the Mountain Lions next possession, senior defensive back Trey Lauer picked off an errant pass and raced 28 yards to the end zone to give Mountain Pointe a 21-0 lead with 1:48 left in the first quarter.
Brown's touchdown reception was set up by a fumble recovery by Wesley Payne on Red Mountain's second play of their second drive. The Mountain Lions only first-half penetration into Pride territory was stymied by an interception by senior cornerback Dominique Fenstermacher, who returned it 63 yards into Mountain Lion territory.
After scoring on their first two drives of the first half, top-seeded Mountain Pointe came up with touchdowns on their first four drives of the second half. Hinojosa found senior wide receiver Timmy Hernandez on a 17-yard flag pattern in the end zone to extend the lead to 28-0. On the next drive, junior running back Brandyn Leonard scored on a five-yard run after a short Mountain Lion punt into the wind. Then Brown caught his second TD pass of the night on a 63-yard out-and-up route to run the lead to 42-0 late in the third quarter. Junior running back Paul Lucas finished off the Pride scoring with a nifty 48-yard run to make it 48-0 after a missed extra point.
Red Mountain, the number nine seed in the Division I bracket, got on the board in the final minute when senior quarterback Brennan Dobson hit senior receiver Colton Cottrell on a 35-yard TD strike.
The Mountain Lions end their season at 6-6 and exit the playoffs in the quarterfinals for the second straight season. Mountain Pointe runs its perfect mark to 12-0 and will take on fourth-seeded Desert Ridge in the semifinals Friday night at McClintock High School in Tempe.