Tyler Baty shook off a rocky start, finishing with 288 yards passing and four touchdowns to lead the Mission Prep football team to 41-8 victory over visiting Frazier Mountain in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Northeast Division playoffs Friday.
The win marks the first playoff victory for the school in three years and the first under coach Chad Henry.
“It’s the first time we’ve been in this situation,” Baty said. “So to come out and get a win in our first playoff game was awesome, especially here at home.”
Baty had two touchdown passes in the first half but threw an interception in the red zone. Mission Prep also was stopped on downs inside the 20-yard line in the first half that left the Royals (10-1) holding on to a 14-0 halftime lead.
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“It was a little bit interesting in the first half because they were playing in the secondary in a way we haven’t seen all year,” Henry said. “(Baty) had a little bit trouble adjusting and understanding what they were trying to do and it was a bit confusing.”
It did not take long for Baty to turn things around.
After Frazier Mountain scored on the first play of the second half on an 82-yard touchdown run, Mission Prep answered with Baty finding Joey Hall for a 70-yard touchdown pass, the first of three unanswered scores for the Royals in the quarter.
Hall finished with six catches for 175 yards and two touchdowns.
“When we need a play we look to him,” Baty said about the senior wide receiver. “He always makes big plays. He’s that guy for our team.”
Patrick Laird had two carries for 24 yards and four catches for 46 yards and a touchdown, and Michael Cardwell had 15 carries for 58 yards and a touchdown for Mission Prep.
“We came out a little bit nervous and a little bit tight in this game,” Henry said. “And it showed in the first half with a little bit of sloppy play, which was a little uncharacteristic. But I think we settled down.”
It was a sloppy game as the Royals were flagged 11 times for 120 yards. The Falcons were penalized 15 times, also for 120 yards.
Mission Prep forced six Frazier Mountain fumbles, recovering three, and Andy Rowley had an interception deep in Royals territory late in the fourth quarter.
“We came off a loss, so we’re kind of getting back in that rhythm of what we do,” Baty said. “It was good to come out here and get a win, especially after a tough loss for our team. We clean up some things and we’re gonna be good.”