2A high school football preview: Richfield at South Summit

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 23 2012 11:00 p.m. MDT

Richfield (6-4) at South Summit (7-2)

2A state tournament quarterfinal

Friday, 2 p.m.

Parry's Power Guide: South Summit by 25

All-time series: South Summit leads 4-1

Coach vs. coach: Richfield's Corey Morrison leads South Summit's Jerry Parker, 1-0

Last meeting: Oct. 24, 2008 (2A first round) — Richfield 18, South Summit 6

It's been just over four years since the last meeting between these two teams.

Flashback to 2008. It was the 2A play-in game on the line, with both teams riding average records into the playoffs. Visiting Richfield got the best of South Summit in the 18-6 result, and head coach Jerry Parker hasn't quite forgotten about the loss.

"It's in the back of my mind," said Parker. "They came up and served us one, so we will be ready."

Quarterback Caden Christenson comes into Friday's quarterfinal matchup sitting comfortably in third place among 2A leaders for passing touchdowns. Christenson has thrown for 823 yards with 12 TD passes on the season, and also carried the ball for paydirt eight times to lead South Summit to a 7-2 record in 2012.

Favored target Hayden Packard has been productive on both the rushing and receiving attack for South Summit this year. Packard tallied eight touchdown carries, and also hauled in six TD receptions to lead the offense.

It's been quite the ride for South Summit over the past three years. Two championship losses to San Juan and a semifinal loss to Manti in 2011 have resonated with the coach and players.

"We've had three years now that we're capable of winning it all, but we came up short three years straight," said Parker. "We've got a good thing going, we've just got to get over the hump once."

Richfield is riding a four-game winning streak coming into Friday, including a 19-14 win over North Summit in the first round of the playoffs.

Josh Henry will be the center of the Richfield attack, having tallied 12 TD runs on the season. Henry also has 894 yards in the 2012 campaign, and is looking to eclipse that 1,000-yard mark for the first time in his football career. Henry has also contributed on defense with 67 tackles.

Spencer Henderson has also made strides this season at the quarterback position by throwing for 835 yards thus far. Henderson has six passing scores, but also threw six interceptions in 2012.

With Porter Santos (7 TDs), Jay Reidhead (4 TDs) and Carson Freestone (5 TDs) on the prowl, South Summit will be looking to spread the Richfield defense as noted by Parker.

"I'm kind of excited to see how they can spread the ball around out there," said Parker. "Our last game of the season we had nine different kids score points, so we have a good core of kids that can find the end zone."

Defensively, both teams have the opportunity to exploit the opposing team.

Shay Morrison and Chase Christensen have combined for 182 tackles, while Jarom Stewart has recorded five interceptions for Richfield.

For South Summit, Garret Crystal and Jay Reidhead lead the defense with 162 tackles and Brad Rishins has tallied nine sacks in 2012.

Coach Parker mentioned that his players know what is at stake, and after all the ups and downs this Wildcat squad has been through in the past few years, now is the time to take care of business.

"The urgency is there. We definitely feel like we've got an opportunity, it just comes down to taking care of business," said Parker. "Take care of this game, take care of the semis and get back to that final game again."

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