Note: This week’s highlights include some of the longest plays of the 2013 season. Also included are player accolades and team achievements from Week 6, as well as milestone games and school-record passing updates.
The final regular season battle between unbeatens takes place when Brighton invades Bingham for Region 3 supremacy. The Bengals maintain a 29-12-1 lead in a series that was uninterrupted from 1969, when Brighton opened, through 2005, the last time they met.
More on this week’s other matchups later on.
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The regular season is barely half over, but many 1A and 2A teams have just two region contests remaining. Some teams in every classification can secure postseason berths this week while others can clinch least a tie for a playoff spot.
No team in the 5A ranks can lay claim to postseason action by winning this week.
But in Class 4A’s Region 5, a Logan victory over Sky View clinches a tie for a tournament berth. In Region 6, if Corner Canyon gets by Skyline, the Chargers secure a playoff berth in their first season. And in Region 7, Timpview grabs a spot by defeating Spanish Fork.
Over in 3AA North, Juan Diego and Stansbury cement postseason berths if they and Park City prevail. In that case, the Miners clinch a tie for postseason play.
In Class 3A North, Judge Memorial and Morgan claim berths by winning, as does Juab in 3A South. If Juab triumphs, the winner of Richfield at Manti also clinches, and the loser can do no worse than tie for a spot.
In 2A North, Layton Christian and South Summit clash for the region lead, and both have already wrapped up postseason berths. Millard and North Summit guarantee themselves tournament combat with a victory.
Class 2A South’s Beaver snares a berth by winning, while Grand has already clinched a tie for a spot. The winner of San Juan at Enterprise likewise clinches a tie.
Finally, all four 1A North teams qualify for the playoffs and Milford is locked in fourth. In Class 1A South, Diamond Ranch, Kanab and Monticello have clinched and Whitehorse at Monument Valley in Week 10 determines the final berth.
No team has been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs and only six schools are out of contention for region championships: American Leadership, Gunnison and Summit Academy in 2A North, Milford in 1A North and Monument Valley and Whitehorse in 1A South.
Davis now claims the most all-time victories in the state with 556. But the Darts have a bye this week and West can catch up with a win over Hunter.
Duchense enjoys the fifth longest current winning streak in the nation according to MaxPreps. Last week, the Eagles rushed for a school record 519 yards, which ranks 19th-most all-time.
Meanwhile, Logan passed for 517 yards, the third-most for a team in Utah prep history.
Showing defensive prowess, Morgan held Carbon to minus-16 yards of total offense, the eighth fewest all-time and the fewest since Box Elder held Roy to minus-22 yards in 2008…. Parowan blanked an opponent for the first time since 2008 and Richfield last posted back-to-back shutouts in 1987.
Logan’s Chase Nelson racked up 586 yards of total offense, the third-most ever. He passed for 503 yards, becoming just the fifth player – and first from Logan – to throw for over 500 yards in a game.
Of the 503 yards, 264 went to Taylor Compton, the 10th most for a single-game. He’s climbed to 19th in career receiving yards with 1,969.
Olympus’ Coleman Meier electrified the crowd with 419 all-purpose yards – the eighth-most in Utah gridiron history. His effort came on 225 rushing yards, 7 receiving yards and 157 return yards, including a 92-yard kickoff return.
There’s still a lot of football left, but if four players stay near their current pace, they’ll break into the top-10 in categories involving season averages.
Pine View’s Cody Wilstead averages 362.7 passing yards per game, which would rank second all-time were the season to end today. The leader is Jordan’s Alex Hart, who averaged 370.2 ypg in 2009.
Gunnison Valley’s Jacob Hatch averages 135.2 reception yards per game, which also ranks second all-time to Copper Hills’ Dallin Barnes, who averaged 135.6 ypg in 2002.
In the same category, Logan’s Compton averages 128.8 ypg, ranking fifth all-time.
Lehi’s Caden Calton averages 207.3 rushing yards per game, which ranks sixth.
Now to this week's games:
Realignment created eight first time matchups in league games, including all three contests in Region 7: Skyline at Corner Canyon, Murray at Mountain View and Timpanogos at Olympus. The other five: Herriman at American Fork, Park City at Ben Lomond, Delta at Canyon View, Layton Christian at South Summit and Maple Mountain at Wasatch. In a non-region first-time meeting, Grand visits Summit Academy.
The new region alignments also reunited teams that haven’t squared off for at least four seasons: Bear River at Payson (1985 Class 3A playoff), Emery at Grantsville (1987 Class 2A semifinal), Kearns at Bountiful (1993 Class 5A playoff), Carbon at Judge (1994), Ogden at Roy (2004), Brighton at Bingham (2005), Union at Morgan (2006), Rich at Kanab (2008) and Timpview at Spanish Fork (2009). Also, Milford last played Kanab’s JV team in 1995.
Springville has won four straight over Provo dating back to 2007 as these Utah County rivals head into their 73rd encounter, but the Bulldogs retain a 42-26-4 series lead.
Logan and Sky View tangle for the 52nd time. The Grizzlies have won three straight but just four of the last past seven and lead the series 31-20.
Alta and Jordan clashed from 1979-85 and again annually since resuming the rivalry in 1995. The Beetdiggers snapped Alta’s six-game series winning streak with a 36-24 victory in 2012, but the Hawks still lead 18-9.
East won its first meeting with Mountain Crest, in 1995, but the Mustangs have won three since, including a 56-26 stomping in a 2010 quarterfinal…. West Jordan hasn’t lost to Copper Hills in 19 meetings…. Stansbury and Tooele are tied 2-2 in their annual Battle for the Boot.
This week, Monument Valley visits Shiprock Northwest (N.M) and Whitehorse travels to Red Mesa (Ariz.), completing Utah’s prep action against out-of-state teams. So far, Utah schools have posted a 20-10 record against non-state foes.
Enterprise seeks its 100th victory, while North Sevier plays its 550th game and Maple Mountain competes in its 50th.
Among coaches, San Juan’s Monty Lee goes for his 100th win at San Juan (for the second week), while Brad Burtenshaw coaches his 50th game at Maple Mountain and Clint Christiansen directs his 50th at Stansbury. Christiansen also attempts to earn his 75th career victory in stints at South Sevier, Provo and Stansbury.
For those keeping track, a record for Bountiful was discovered thanks to Jake Magalei, Kanab’s yardage was inadvertently omitted last week, and Logan has a new record:
Bountiful – 258, Chase Christensen, 10/31/2003 vs. American Fork
Kanab – 321, Brandon Jenson, 9/2/2011 vs. Grand County
Logan – 503, Chase Nelson, 9/27/2013 vs. Bonneville
Sky View’s Alex McCrae returned an interception 100 yards last week, just the 18th player to accomplish that feat, and that leads listing the longest plays of the year.
Rushing (min. 90 yards)
98 – Isaiah Peete, Taylorsville, 8/30 vs. Murray
95 – Aaron Foster, Kanab, 9/6 vs. Monument Valley
94 – Caden Calton, Lehi, 8/23 vs. Murray
93 – Saxon Mingus, Diamond Ridge, 8/23 vs. Enterprise
92 – Ula Tolutau, East, 9/6 vs. Jordan
Passing (min. 90 yards)
97 – JarDee Nessen to Bryken Jensen, Bear River, 9/27 vs. Stansbury
92 – Nick Warmsley to Bridger Cowdin, Desert Hills, 9/27 vs. Pine View
91 – Zach Ashman to Suli Tukumoeatu, Granger, 8/23 vs. Riverton
91 – Brayden Burnside to Levi Vivier, Diamond Ranch, 9/6 vs. Whitehorse
90 – Carter Hardy to Bryant Barnes, Milford, 9/20 vs. Rich
Interception returns (min. 95 yards)
100 –Alex McCrae, Sky View, 9/27 vs. Mountain Crest
98 – Hadin Jones, Kanab, 9/6 vs. Monument Valley
95 – Kody Jarvis, Herriman, 9/13 vs. Lone Peak
Punt returns (min. 90 yards)
90 – Matt Muir, Duchesne, 9/21 vs. Grantsville JV
Kickoff returns (min. 98 yards)
99 – Jayk Brooks, Box Elder, 8/23 vs. Syracuse
99 – Britain Covey, Timpview, 8/23 vs. Sky View
99 – Brandon Kinsey, Woods Cross, 9/6 vs. Viewmont
99 – Mitch Rasmussen, Murray, 8/23 vs. Lehi
98 – Denzel Murphy, Hillcrest, 8/30 vs. Cyprus
Fumble returns (min. 90 yards)
96 – Jeff Gardner, American Leadership, 9/13 vs. Millard
93 – Jeff Rowley, Juab, 8/23 vs. Millard
Field goals (min. 50 yards)
50 – Alex Cody, West, 8/30 vs. Copper Hills