MESA, AZ - Mesa scored 27 unanswered points to rally for a 53-40 victory over New Mexico Military on a rainy Homecoming night.
Down 40-26 with 10:50 to play, the T-Birds staged a dramatic comeback fueled mostly by three turnovers caused by the MCC defense and a huge fourth down stop.
With the win, Mesa moves too 3-3 for the season and drops the Broncos to 2-4.
NMMI appeared to have things well in hand when MCC back-up quarterback Brennen Dobson (Fr., Mesa, AZ/Red Mountain H.S.) fumbled on a halfback pass.and Cam Montgomery scooped it up and raced 70 yards for a TD.
That put NMMI on top, 40-26, with the Broncos having rolled up 20 unanswered points.
MCC took the ensuing and Garette Craig (So., Phoenix, AZ/Mountain Pointe H.S.) returned it to the NMMI 44. Five plays later Austin Apodaca, pictured right, (So., Longmont, Colo/Silver Creek H.S.) tossed a 25-yard TD pass to Tyler Eggers (So., Chandler, AZ/Hamilton H.S.) and the T-Birds were within seven, 40-33.
Mesa then forced a fumble by Bronco quarterback Michael Adjukuko and Rakeem Wiggins (Fr., Gainesville, Fla/Bucholz H.S.) recovered at the NMMI 30.
On the next play Apodaca hit Dusty Cook (Fr, Gilbert, AZ/Highland H.S.) from 30 yards out and suddenly the game was tied.
The MCC defense then made a huge stop on fourth and one at the Bronco 39 which led to a TD pass from Apodaca to Eggers for the third time in the game, this time from 39 yards out.
Jalen Jenkins (Fr., Chandler, AZ/Hamilton H.S) picked off an Adjukuko pass just four plays into the next Bronco possession.
Although the Thunderbirds didn't score on that opportunity, Kasey Johnson (So., Little Rock, Ark/Joe T. Robinson H.S.) grabbed another errant pass with 1:51 to play.
Mesa, faced with a third and one situation at its own 44, and a chance to run out the clock with a first down, Carlton Williams (So.,, Avondale, AZ/Warren Central H.S.) blew up the middle for not only a first down but a 56-yard score that effectively wrapped things up.
Apodaca unofficially finished with 309 yards passing, converting 29 of 45 attempts with a school-recotd six TD passes and no interceptions.
Eggers caught nine of the passes and three of the touchdowns, for 113 yards, while Craig had five grabs for 61 yards and a score.
Williams finished with 111 yards on 15 tries.
Mesa has a week off before hosting Arizona Western on Oct. 11.
Other WSFL scores:
Snow 42, Phoenix 6
Arizona Western 49, Pima 13
Scottsdale 37, Eastern Arizona 7