LEHI On an evening where the offense finally appeared, it was the defense that gave the Lehi Pioneers their first win in recent memory Friday night.
Specifically, it was Dylan Stadel. The 6-foot-5, 264-pound defensive tackle was in Springville's backfield as often as the Red Devils' own running backs. He had five sacks and recovered a fumble in Lehi's 25-16 non-region win.
But it was sack of Springville quarterback Isaac Allred in the end zone, netting Lehi two points for the safety, that finally allowed the Pioneers to rest easy.
"We were getting nervous, he said. "It was scary at the end."
When Stadel threw Allred to the ground, it ended a long drought (Lehi had won just one game over the last two years) and it sent the hometown crowd into a frenzy.
"This win has been a long time in coming," said Lehi coach Derrick Payton, whose club lost 2-0 last week to West Jordan. "Our defense came through. When we got that lead, we started to play tight."
Lehi hasn't had the lead for a long time, it seemed. But this time, the offense clicked and defense was stout. The Pioneers had the momentum and and appeared to be headed for the locker room at halftime with a 17-0 lead, thanks to a pair of touchdowns by Tyler Duclos.
However, Springville coach Scott Mitchell went deep in the playbook and, on the half's final play, the Red Devils executed the hook-and-lateral perfectly. Allred hit Jordan Sumsion on a 20-yard pass, then Sumsion lateraled the ball to Mark DeWyze, who outran the Lehi secondary for a touchdown.
Springville kept the momentum for most of the remainder of the game. The Pioneers only saving grace was two field goals by Zack Morgan, who got Payton's attention a few days ago when he started drilling long field goals in practice for the Lehi sophomore team.
Lehi had a chance to beat West Jordan last week, but its late field goal was blocked. Springville got an 8-yard touchdown pass from Allred to Sumsion, and a short field goal by Mika Goodman to narrow the gap to 23-16. Allred was Springville's brightest point, completing 19 of 35 passes for 244 yards.
The Red Devils had a couple of chances to tie the game, but Lehi's defense stiffened.
"I was tired. We were all out of breath," said Stadel. "But we wanted this win so badly."
It was the Pioneers first win since a 47-12 victory over Ben Lomond on Sept. 7, 2007. Springville, meanwhile, fell to 0-2.
"This victory is going to turn the season," said Stadel.