SMITHFIELD They didn't go quite so far as calling a Statue of Liberty play, a fumblerooski or try lateraling 15 times, but Sky View's football players creatively found a whole lot of ways to light up the scoreboard in Friday's 4A quarterfinal game.
"We'll take points any way we can get them," said a smiling Sky View coach Craig Anhder.
Especially when the outburst both offensive and defensive results in a trip to Rice-Eccles Stadium for the 4A semifinals. That's where the Bobcats are headed to face Pine View after outlasting Mountain View 45-23.
That helps take some sting off of losing at home in the second round to East last fall when the Bobcats were 11-0.
"We're really excited," Anhder said. "I give credit to the whole coaching staff and incredible players."
Conundrum was the mystery word for a game the crowd plays with the P.A. announcer, but the coach's choice of "incredible" aptly described his guys' performances.
The Bobcats (10-2) started their scoring on a nice 9-yard TD run by J.D. Falslev. From there, though, they took some unusual paths to the end zone, including a wobbly but completed receiver-to-receiver TD toss, a 92-yard touchdown pass play, a 60-yard pick-six (by McKade Brody, who filled in as QB on the earlier 32-yard scoring throw to Jay Gero) and a 50-yard fumble return by Brayden Compton on a botched Bruin lateral pass.
Sophomore Kyler Carlsen, who went 11-for-17 for 212 yards and a TD, also had a 3-yard QB keeper touchdown. And Ben Brooksby scored more times than anybody else with his 37-yard field goal and six PATs.
That is how to put an opponent in a conundrum. Racking up 245 yards passing and another 190 on the ground certainly helps, too.
Still, Mountain View (7-4) was oh-so-close to catching up a couple of times with its persistent rushing attack. Those opportunities, however, slipped away just as quickly and turned into Bobcat points.
For instance, trailing 17-7 in the second quarter, the Bruins were stuffed on fourth down in the red zone. Three plays later, Carlsen hooked up with Kyle Allen. The receiver, who had 125 yards on four catches, shook off a defender and raced downfield for a 24-7 lead.
The versatile Brady then thwarted another Bruin drive, picking off a pass and returning it 60 yards for a 31-7 lead.
The Bruins held the Bobcats to minus 1 yard in the third quarter, helping them make things quite interesting. A pair of Mark Garrett short touchdown keepers and a successful onside kick pulled them within 31-23 early in the fourth. It then almost really got intriguing, but a near-interception just bobbled out of Nate Stroshine's hands.
The Bobcats responded big-time again. Carlsen connected with Zach Saxton for a 22-yard pickup and eventually scored with 8:13 left. Compton sealed it with his defensive TD. John Hortin also had a pick on the Bobcats' 3-yard line.
Mountain View coach Teko Johnson was proud that his players scraped back into it after trailing by 24 at halftime."I thought our kids played hard," he said. "To come back and compete and play hard is a testament to our kids ... They just left it all on the field today."