Phoenix, AZ - Getting back to their winning ways, the Mesa Thunderbirds beat the Phoenix College Bears, 60-27, in a Western States Football League matchup Saturday night.
Scoring began in the first quarter when the Bears connected on two field goals to take the first lead of the night but Mesa's quarterback, Christian Lopez, put Mesa ahead with the first of his six touchdown passes of the night, a 12 yard strike to tight end Justin Jan, to make it a 7-6 game.
After the Bears returned a 53 punt return for a touchdown, Lopez connected with Sonnie Richardson for a 14 yard TD pass to give Mesa a 14-13 lead. The score to Richardson was the beginning of 31 unanswered points Mesa would put up against the Bear defense. Terrance Pryor was the recipient of Lopez's next TD pass, a 17 yard strike to the corner of the endzone with 8:28 to play in the second quarter. Deyton Jackson then caught Lopez's fourth TD pass, a seven yarder in the front corner of the endzone to extend Mesa's lead to 28-13 at the 1:22 mark.
Mesa's defense played tough all night, creating scoring opportunities for the offense like the interception by Elmando McCoy Jr had with about one minute left in the half which led to a two yard swing pass touchdown to Terrance Roberts Jr with 16 seconds left in the half. Mesa took a 35-13 lead into halftime.
Christian Lopez tied a Mesa game high in touchdown passes with six, a school record he holds now with Rathen Ricedorff and Austin Apodaca. Lopez also currently leads the NJCAA in touchdown passes now with 23.
The T-Birds move to 4-2 overall with a 2-1 WSFL record. Mesa will be at home next week for homecoming against Glendale, with a kickoff at 7 pm.