No. 2 Desert Ridge at No. 9 Red Mountain - East Valley Tribune: Home

No. 2 Desert Ridge at No. 9 Red Mountain

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Red Mountain is starting to figure itself out at the right time, with consecutive wins (vs. Desert Mountain and Mesa), a relentless schedule and the return of QB Caleb Murray-Thomas have combined to help vault the Lions into the playoff picture. The Mesa city schools’ tour continues this week against the best of them in Desert Ridge, which is about as hot a team as any in Division I not named Mountain Pointe. The Jaguars will finally see a shot upward in competition, which they need. Whether Red Mountain can contain Player of the Year candidate Taren Morrison (1,300 yards rushing, 19 TD) and move the ball on a stingy Jaguars’ defense are the two big questions. They can, but whether it lasts for four full quarters is key. It’s hard to keep Desert Ridge’s running game down forever, and even though the Jaguars haven’t seen a lot of tough teams, the Jaguars aren’t afraid of any competition (which they’ll get the final three weeks). Red Mountain will keep this one close, and even in a loss, the Lions will still be in position for a playoff spot.

Prediction: Desert Ridge 28, Red Mountain 21

-- Mark Heller

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