SPRINGVILLE — After the Springville football team lost to Timpview in last year's 4A state championship game it carried the sting of the defeat for almost 12 months.
Even though they wouldn't play in the regular season, the Red Devils knew that to win a state title, they would have to meet Timpview again, and beat the team that sometimes seemed unbeatable.
Its second chance came on Friday in the 4A quarterfinals. Springville was awarded home field advantage after a coin toss. Then, against the team that had won four straight state championships and 17 consecutive playoff games — and taught them a humbling lesson a year earlier — the Red Devils rolled and won the game 38-27.
There were no gimmicks and no luck. With the crowd behind them, the Red Devils played with all the swagger and confidence. They took a two-touchdown lead in the first half and never let off the gas.
"The guys believed it," said Springville coach Scott Mitchell. "We believed it all week. There wasn't a doubt in anybody's mind. They just played like there was no tomorrow."
Springville ironically did what Timpview typically does to its opponents. The Red Devils pressured the quarterback, forced turnovers, and exploded on offense with big plays.
"We weren't ready for the moment a year ago," said Mitchell. "You've got to beat them if you want to win a state championship. It feels sweet to knock off No. 1."
With Timpview leading 7-0 in the second quarter, an interception gave the T-Birds a first-down 10 yards away from the end zone. When Springville held on defense and forced a field goal, the tide turned.
The field-goal attempt was missed, and the Red Devils scored seconds later when Brody Swanson rumbled 72 yards into the end zone. After a Timpview punt, Springville took the lead when quarterback Steve Bate saw Matt Sumsion break open, and hit the tight end for an 83-yard score.
Still in the second quarter, Caleb McCray picked off the T-Birds on their next possession, and that set up a 13-yard TD run by Bates. The 21-point scoring spree took less than four minutes, and Springville never looked back.
"When the shots were there we took them and we connected," said Bate. "That was the difference in the game."
Statistically, Timpview's performance wasn't bad, but nothing came easily. Quarterback Christian Covey was pressured and sacked all game long, and when Timpview did score, it usually required a drawn-out possession.35 comments on this story
One of those long drives went for 90 yards and ate up most of the third quarter, ending with a two-yard run by Bryson McKenzie. It cut Timpview's deficit to one touchdown. But, as if on cue, Springville answered with another big play when Jaylon Miyasaki beat his defender down the sidelines and hauled in a 51-yard TD pass.
Timpview scored twice more, but the Red Devils stayed in control. A 35-yard pass to Sumsion, and a Jared Chichia field goal, made it 38-20 in the fourth quarter and all but sealed the win.
"We just came out with no fear," said Sumsion. "Those guys needed to be beaten and we did it."