Call it "Purple Reign" - the color reserved for royalty so aptly worn by North Summit, the two-time kings of 1A prep football.
The North Summit Braves successfully defended their 1989 crown with a 26-6 victory over Monticello in Saturday afternoon's 1A championship victory at Mountain View High.All North Summit has done is beat all 1A opponents in the past two years.
This year, the Braves were 0-4 against 2A neighbors like Park City, South Summit, Morgan and Manti but 8-0 against 1A competition - including Saturday's title triumph over Monticello.
North Summit only needed a half a game to go up 26-0 against Monticello, which made for a lot of coasting in the second half - North Summit Coach Rick Harrison used adjectives such as "sloppy," "flat" and "miscomplacent."
"That wasn't a pretty second half," admitted Harrison. "But as long as you win, it doesn't matter."
What mattered early was that North Summit scored two on its first two possession - both single-play scoring efforts. Quarterback Brandon Jones found a slanting Matt Bates, who slipped one tackle and ran 83 yards for a TD. Jones later found a slanting Cade Sargent for a 43-yard TD, with Jimmy Garfield kicking one of two PATs.
Four minutes into the game, the Braves ran two plays - two passes, similar routes, similar results - a 13-0 lead.
Jones linked up with Sargent for another TD toss - this time the 22-yarder in the second period, with a PAT pass failing and leaving the score at 19-0.
Monticello Coach Joe Davis bemoaned early defensive breakdowns with the Buckaroos' strengths - the defensive line and defensive secondary. Davis said his team aided North Summit's early success with a lack of pass-rush pressure and some miscues in the defensive backfield.
"We were excited to be here (in the championship) and maybe we just forgot," said Davis. "What did we have, three missed tackles for three touchdowns?"
The Brave defense held the Buckaroos to 66 yards total offense in the first half and forced four turnovers. Sargent scored another touchdown on the fourth Monticello turnover - a 35-yard interception return for a touchdown, with Chad Simister kicking the PAT for a 26-0 margin that carried through intermission.
Sargent finished with four receptions for 109 yards and two TDs, an interception for a touchdown, and a 47-yard punt return. Besides his 83-yard touchdown catch, Bates rushed 13 times for 155 yards before pulling up lame midway in the third period.
Jones completed seven passes for 199 yards and three TDs, but that was out of 27 attempts, thanks to a number of misfires in the second quarter and second half as the offense bogged down.
The second half belonged more to the Buckaroos, with sophomore substitute QB Robert Davis completing his first three passes in leading Monticello to its sole score in the final quarter, with Paul Walker scoring from 4 yards out.
Mammoth lineman Ben Semadeni was stopped short in his PAT rushing attempt, leaving the score at 26-6.
So could Monticello take solace in the second half?
"There's no such thing as a moral victory," said Davis, whose team finished at 7-5 overall. "We just broke down."