Desert Edge QB Lara still in hunt for state passing record

With the continuing threat of COVID-related cancellations hanging over the 2021 high school football season, getting through the schedule was never a sure thing for any team.

But here we are at Week 10 and still rolling.  And there’s probably no one who is any more grateful than Adryan Lara.  The senior at Desert Edge High School in Goodyear knew coming into the season that he had a shot at breaking the Arizona high school record for most passing yards in a prep career.

He has passed the first step toward that goal of 11,083 yards that was set by Spencer Rattler three years ago while at Pinnacle High School, a 6A program in north Phoenix.  Lara became the record holder in the state’s 5A Conference when he reached 9,692 yards in last week’s 38-20  victory over Glendale’s Ironwood High School.

The overall state record will be a much bigger step to climb.  However, it’s within reach.

A major factor in that effort will be out of his control.  Desert Edge will have to give him the chance to reach his goal by winning as many games as possible.  The perfect storm, of course, would be if the Scorpions make it all the way to the 5A state finals.  They are 5-2 on the season, with a one-point loss in overtime to Horizon HS and a 42-14 loss to Cactus HS.  Both of those opponents are among the state’s top teams and projected to be Open Division participants.

Lara came into the 2021 season with 7,894 passing yards and needed 3,190 to break the state record for 11-man football.  At this point on the schedule, he needs another 1,391 yards to catch Rattler, who is currently the starting quarterback at Oklahoma.  If Desert Edge manages to make it to the 5A title game, Lara would need 199 yards per game to reach his goal.

Last season he averaged 266 yards a game, so he’s capable of achieving that goal.  Last week against Ironwood he threw for 343 yards.

During his first three seasons as the Desert Edge QB, Lara’s style was that of a pocket passer, but Mark and Marcus Carter, the team’s co-head coaches, have turned him into more of a dual threat since he has the speed to pick up yardage on the ground.  He’s also been given the green light to call his own plays on the field because his coaches trust his instincts and knowledge of the game.

That should also help him succeed next year when he will be playing at Washington State.

But for now, it will help the Scorpions win the games necessary to go deep into the playoffs.  And perhaps also give the youngster a chance to use his arm to try to put his name in the high school record books.