San Juan (10-0) vs. South Summit (8-2)
2A state tournament semifinal
At Southern Utah University
Saturday, 2 p.m.
Parry’s Power Guide: San Juan by 12
All-time series: San Juan leads 6-0
Coach vs. coach: San Juan’s Monty Lee leads South Summit’s Jerry Parker, 4-0
Last meeting: Nov. 13, 2010 (2A championship) — San Juan 19, South Summit 6
Two seasons ago, San Juan and South Summit met in the 2A championship game.
On Saturday, the two will meet on another neutral field, in a 2A semifinal matchup at Southern Utah University.
“We have played San Juan a few times,” said South Summit coach Jerry Parker, “and they are always good. They have great coaches and great athletes.”
The Broncos ran the table in the 2A South Region and then easily defeated Emery, 56-13, in the first round of the playoffs. Barkley Christensen led San Juan in that game with five touchdowns — three rushing and two passing.
“Barkley is a great leader,” San Juan coach Monty Lee said. “When he got the opportunity to be quarterback, he shouldered that. He will do anything and everything to make us better.”
Christensen is surrounded by a solid cast.
“We have 35 kids that work hard every day with one goal in mind — be better today than yesterday,” Lee continued. “We have a great group of boys that love to play football.”
When it comes to preparing for the Wildcats, San Juan isn’t changing a thing from what it has done all year.
“We are trying to simulate what we think South Summit will throw at us and do the best we can to prepare for that,” Lee said. “We know they are a great team with great athletes and great tradition.”
In Kamas, South Summit — which defeated Richfield, 21-14, in the first round — is also maintaining normal routines in preparing for the semifinal meeting.
“We are just doing what we do,” Parker said. “We are not intimidated by (San Juan); we are excited to get to line up against them.”
The Wildcats are led by the play of running back Hayden Packard, who Parker said, “has been solid all year,” and junior quarterback Caden Christenson, who “has been a pleasant surprise since the start of the season.”
South Summit is looking forward to the return of Porter Santos, who has been sidelined with a knee injury, while Jay Reidhead and Carson Freestone have been solid at fullback.
Ultimately, the Wildcats are focused on this game not just for themselves, but for one of their own who can’t be on the field with them.
Porter Hancock broke his neck during a game last season and will be watching as an honorary team captain from the sidelines in his wheelchair.
“He would have been with the seniors, these would have been his games,” Parker said. “We would like to take this one for him.”
San Juan statistical breakdown
Scoring offense: 37.8 ppg
Scoring defense: 4.6 ppg
Passing leader: Barkley Christensen (128-198, 64.6 percent, 1,669 yards, 20 TDs, 4 INTs)
Rushing leaders: Justin Nielson (72 carries, 512 yards, 6 TDs), Logan Meyer (50 carries, 570 yards, 8 TDs), Justin Nielson (72 carries, 512 yards, 6 TDs)
Receiving leaders: Logan Meyer (41 rec., 615 yards, 8 TDs), Bobby Bowring (34 rec., 440 yards, 5 TDs)
Tackles leaders: Logan Meyer (66), Trevor Buck (62)
Sack leaders: Bogh Bayles (4)
Interception leaders: Barkley Christensen (2)
South Summit statistical breakdown
Scoring offense: 39.2 ppg
Scoring defense: 13.6 ppg
Passing leader: Caden Christenson (44-92, 47.8 percent, 890 yards, 14 TDs, 6 INTs)
Rushing leaders: Caden Christensen (99 carries, 524 yards, 8 TDs), Hayden Packard (48 carries, 663 yards, 8 TDs)
Receiving leaders: Hayden Packard (16 rec., 333 yards, 7 TDs)
Tackles leaders: Garrett Crystal, Jay Reidhead (88 each)
Sack leaders: Brad Richins (8)
Interception leaders: Hayden Packard (44)
Felt’s Facts for San Juan High School
All-time record: 376-208-4 (57 years)
Region championships: 17 (1958, 1960, 1992 co, 1993, 1994 co, 1995 co, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2004 co, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012)
Playoff appearances: 38 (including 2012)
All-time playoff record: 53-31
State championships: 6 (1989, 1998, 2000, 2006, 2009, 2010)
State championship record: 6-6
Felt’s Factoid(s): San Juan has the biggest championship game comeback: down 20-0 after the first quarter, the Broncos scored 36 straight to win the 1998 Class 2A title, 36-26. ... SJ has scored in 157 straight games since 1999, the longest active streak and second-longest in Utah prep history. ... Coach Monty Lee has the best winning percentage among active coaches (min. 5 years): .825. ... Bronco Jens Wilson returned five kickoffs for TDs (2005) to set a state record (tied with Morgan’s Jordan Wamsley).
Felt’s Facts for South Summit High School
All-time record: 329-325-8 (75 years)
Region championships: 10 (1977, 1979, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 2000.)
Playoff appearances: 36 (including 2012)
All-time playoff record: 41-31
State championships: 4 (1977, 1978, 1984, 1988)
State championship record: 4-7
Felt’s Factoid(s): Wildcat Blake Marchant set a state record for blocked kicks in a game — three — when he blocked two punts and a PAT to help the Wildcats win the 1977 Class 1A championship over Beaver.