SPANISH FORK After facing two of the state's powerhouses in the first two weeks, Spanish Fork got its first win of the year in a 36-0 homecoming thrashing of Payson Friday.
The Dons (1-2) started their season with losses to Alta and Timpview, but their response to the adversity this week impressed head coach Matt Christensen.
"It felt good," he said of the first win of the season. "I know Alta and Timpview are great teams, but you start wondering and we just hate losing. We wanted to get back on a winning track so we focused and had a great week of practice. It didn't show early on but we bounced back."
It didn't show early on. In fact, the game couldn't have started out any uglier for both squads.
The Dons were unable to pick up the opening kickoff, and Payson recovered the ball and had an opportunity early, with the ball on the 22-yard line. However, one play later the Lions coughed the ball up right back to Spanish Fork. The Dons then got two more plays off before turning it right back over to Payson. By the time the first quarter was over there had been five turnovers, but the Dons still managed to be in front 8-0 after a 36-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Breck Lewis to Nate Binks.
"I think it was just homecoming jitters, you know, it's homecoming and there are big crowds," Lewis said. "So it took a while for us to get going but in the end we got it."
Spanish Fork's Richard Wilson scampered for a 13-yard touchdown in the second quarter to extend the lead to 15-0 at the half.
Payson's offensive line never got on track and it kept both of their quarterbacks scrambling the entire game in an effort to make something happen, but it just never did.
"Our defensive line did a great job and our backers were flying around as well," Christensen said. "That is when it is fun, when you really start moving around and have some success."
In the third quarter Lewis hooked up with Chris Olson for a seven-yard touchdown to push the lead to 22-0. Then in the fourth Lewis threw two more touchdowns a 24-yard strike to Travis Still and a 20-yard fade to Wilson for his second touchdown of the night.
Lewis did damage to Payson's defense with his legs, but he torched them in the air going 14-of-21 for 220 yards and four touchdowns. Wilson finished with four receptions for 88 yards.
"This win is huge confidence-wise," Lewis said. "Especially for our defense 'cause they shut them out, and we got thrown around a little bit in the first two games. So mostly it is just confidence right now. We have a great offense and we feel we are going to surprise some teams."