HURRICANE — Workmanlike is probably the best way to describe Hurricane High School's approach?to?Friday's 3A quarterfinal against visiting Grantsville. It was a clean, precise effort, all the tools got some use and, in the end, the Tigers' finished product was an easy 41-0 blanking of the Cowboys,
"We came out and took care of our business, that was what we pushed for?all week" Hurricane coach Chris Homer said of his team's effort afterward, "We knew they had some weapons, but I thought we did?a good job?in keeping them in check."
Defensively, the Tigers posted its first shutout of the season, even with its reserves taking over midway through the third quarter, while the offense scored in six of its first seven possessions.
"It looked like they were keying on (Brian) Scott, and I don't blame them, but our other backs?can't be ignored?"?Homer said?of his backfield, which combined for almost 300 yards despite limited playing time.
Scott was "held" to 95 yards and one touchdown in?14 carries, while Adam Thompson — 7 carries for 102 yards and two touchdowns — was one of the recipients of all of the attention heaped on Scott.
Weston Yardley was also a recipient of Grantsville's defensive game plan, but also decided to be a thorn in the side of the Cowboys' offensive plans. Yardley averaged better than 10 yards a carry and scored on runs of 14, 37 and 7 yards. He also started the second half with a 49-yard kickoff return, but it was his defensive efforts that shined just as bright.
Matched up against 6-foot-4 Dalen Erickson, the Cowboys' leading receiver this season averaging 16 yards a catch, Yardley, generously listed at 5-10, outleaped Erickson for an acrobatic interception that led to one Hurricane touchdown. Yardley victimized quarterback Max Cook again late in the first half.
"People forget how good Weston is?defensively. He plays so smart. He has turned into one of the best defensive backs we've had here." Homer said of the senior.
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"We knew 29 (Erickson) was their main target and it worked out good for us because our defensive line put tons of pressure on their quarterback" Yardley said of his defensive efforts.
Yardley also deflected the praise on his offensive efforts.
Defensively for the Tigers, Cameron Hatanaka intercepted a pass and Jared Edwards had a game-high 15 tackles.
Grantsville was held to just 209 yards of total offense and missed on its only scoring opportunity when Sam Williamson sailed a 40-yard field goal attempt wide right late in the third quarter.
Hurricane advances to the 3A semifinals for the fourth consecutive year, where the Tigers will face Spanish Fork at Rice-Eccles Stadium.