Blue Ridge hangs on to edge Fountain Hills in 3A quarters

November 13, 2010 by Les Willsey, AZPreps365

The bruising ground game was there. So was decent defense. But turnovers nearly foiled Blue Ridge and its  bid to reach the 3A quarterfinals Saturday night at Desert Ridge High School.

Jordan Morgan's 24-yard touchdown run  with 2:06 left in the game gave the Yellow Jackets enough breathing room as they hung on to edge determined and upset-minded Fountain Hills, 20-14 in the quarterfinals.

"We made some critical errors and turnovers we normally don't make," Blue Ridge coach Paul Moro said. "This wasn't very pretty but gets us to the next round."

Blue Ridge next faces Florence in the semifinals Nov. 20 at 4 p.m. at Paradise Valley High School.Florence defeated Round Valley, 35-21, in Saturday's late game at Desert Ridge.  Fountain Hills ended its season at 8-4.

Blue Ridge took a 14-7 lead to the third period and looked like its ground game was ready to put some space between it and Fountain Hills.But a pair of fumbles - both in the red zone -- ended two drives in the second hal;f. The second happened at the goalline with 10:18 left that might have put Blue ridge up two scores at the time.

Fountain HIlls prceeded to march to midfield and had momentum with its passing game clicking. A sack by blue Ridge tackle Sheldon Jacks stopped the drive and forced a Falcons punt. Blue Ridge took over at its 30 and marched 70 yards in eight plays -- all on the ground - to take a 20-7 lead with Morgan tallying.BlueRige rushed for 277 yards for the game.. 

"We played really well,"  Fountain Hills coach Jim Fairfield said. "We got turnovers. We needed another score, and a few more things to go right and it might have been a different story."

Fountain Hills quarterback Rainer Greenstreet completed 18 of 28 passes for 248 yards and a touchdown in his second game back from a broken legt. He passed for one TD and ran for another.

Blue Ridge appeared to have the momentum for a two-touchdown lead going to halftime after converting a Fountain Hills fumble into its second TD with 3:38 left in the first half on an 18-yard TD run by Nick Williams.

But Fountaion Hills responded taking the ensuing kickoff and marching 65 yards in six plays mostly through the air. Greenstreet threw an 11-yard TD pass to Mike DeGroote for the score with 28 seconds left before intermission to make it 14-7.