High school football: Pine View stomps Dixie to qualify for playoffs
ST. GEORGE — Forget about the tiebreakers — Pine View is in the playoffs.
The Panthers will represent the funky split-classification Region 9, as they blasted Dixie 42-14 from the Flyers' Walt Brooks Stadium.
"I was really confused about what would happen with tiebreakers and all if we lost this game," Pine View defensive coordinator Greg Croshaw said. "Fortunately, we don't have to worry about that now."
Prentiss Miller continued his impressive sophomore season, rushing for 196 yards and a touchdown. All but 37 of those yards came after halftime.
"He's a heck of a player," Croshaw said. "I'm really excited about the future for this young team. We start seven or eight sophomores."
Miller, as the only running back in Pine View's version of the spread offense, regularly ripped off runs of 10, 15 and 20 yards in compiling his nearly 200 yards. Miller now has nearly 900 yards on the year and is averaging about 100 yards a game and about six yards a carry.
The Panthers opened the game defensively by stripping Dixie quarterback Blake Barney as he scrambled for yards. Pine View's offense wasted no time, cashing in on the turnover by going 28 yards in four plays for a 7-0 lead just two minutes into the ballgame.
"It seems like most teams defer if they win the coin flip like we did today and the reason for that is that you hope you can get some good play from your defense early and set your offense up with good field position," Croshaw said. "That was big for us tonight. We got a defensive play early that led to a score, and we also took the ball first to start the second half and marched down and scored."
Pine View's offense worked over a Dixie defense that has given up an average of 34 points and 400 yards of offense per game this year, as Alec Mecham threw touchdown passes to Cole Wilstead and rushed for another score early in the second quarter.
The Flyers, 2-7 and 1-5, had a respectable 300 yards in the game. Wyatt Gatchell was outstanding, finishing his senior year with a 7-catch, 104-yard game. He led the region with 868 yards receiving.