MIDVALE — Rich's football team didn't waste any time crushing the upset hopes of rival Altamont in the second 1A semifinal at Hillcrest High School on Saturday.
The Rebels scored on their first offensive play of the game and again every time they touched the ball throughout the first half en route to a surprisingly easy 40-14 victory over the Longhorns.
"Our kids came out and played really well and we threw the ball well. We just jumped on them right at the start and that definitely helped for the rest," said Rich coach Ashley Brown, whose team raced to a 33-0 halftime lead.
Rich advances to next Saturday's 1A championship and will face No. 1 Duchesne, which beat the Rebels 40-14 earlier this season.
Kaden Thomson's 71-yard burst up the sideline on Rich's first play from scrimmage set the tone just 9:49 into the game.
"We've already beaten them once and I knew our kids would have confidence and they played hard and jumped right after them and got us a good lead to coast the rest of the way," said Brown.2 comments on this story
The Rebels increased the lead to 20-0 early in the second quarter as Groll capped a 12-play drive with a 12-yard touchdown pass to Chalis Myers. Groll and Dyson Barker both added rushing touchdowns before halftime with the lead ballooning to 33-0.
Quarterback Alex Mackey eased some of the frustration for Altamont midway through the third quarter capping a nice drive with a 1-yard plunge trimming Rich's lead to 33-6.
Altamont's Kyle Foy whittled the lead to 33-14 with 1-yard score with 8:50 left in the game, but Thomson iced the win with a 44-yard score late in game.