NEPHI – For the third week in a row Juab went to overtime against a region opponent. And, for the third week in a row, the Wasps pulled out a win. Juab beat Emery 13-7 on Friday when Tevan Valtinson caught a five-yard TD pass after its defense had held the Spartans on the first possession of overtime.
The Wasps had their backs to the wall late in the fourth quarter and needed some good fortune and defensive heroics just to force the extra period. But, the team's experience in close games came through in the end.
"I don't know what it is with these dang overtime games," said Juab coach Mike Bowring. "Three in a row is pretty ironic. But, we won them and that's all that matters."
The Wasps' quarterback was sophomore Curtis Orme who was making his first-ever start under center. Orme's older brother, a senior, had been the starting quarterback until picking up a season-ending injury last week. Orme experienced some nervous moments in his first full outing, but made some key plays down the stretch, including the game-winning TD pass.
"It took me a little bit to calm down," said Orme. "Our defense played amazing and hopefully we can do the same thing next week."
On the game's final play – a third-down and goal from the five-yard line – Orme rolled to his right and threw a bullet to Valtinson just inside the end zone.
"I saw Tevan turn around," said Orme. "He had a guy right in front of him, but his back was to him. I just threw it."
In the closing minutes of the fourth quarter, Emery drove into Juab territory twice, but came out empty handed.
On one possession, a short punt gave the Spartans the ball on the Juab 33-yard line. That eventually led to a 34-yard field goal attempt that sailed wide.Comment on this story
Then in the last minute, a bad snap on a punt gave Emery the ball on the Juab 10-yard line. But, the Wasps defense pushed the Spartans back and forced a long field goal that was blocked on the last play of regulation.
"Our defense has carried us all year and they did once again tonight," said Bowring. "They won this game for us. We put them in some bad situations tonight but they were able to step it up and make things happen."
The fist half of the game was a defensive battle and the score was 0-0 at halftime. Juab scored first in the third quarter when Orme hit Taran Wright on a 23-yard pass in the corner of the end zone.
Emery answered on its next drive, scoring on a 15-yard run by Colton Fasselin.