We played hard, got some momentum, and quickly put it to them. —Davis coach Tyler Gladwell
TAYLORSVILLE — The Taylorsville Warriors wanted to see if they were for real Friday night.
Playing at home in front of a large crowd, and with a local television audience to boot, it was the Warriors who were booted.
Longtime 5A power Davis gave Taylorsville a large dose of reality with a 33-0 nonregion win.
“We played hard, got some momentum, and quickly put it to them,” said Davis coach Tyler Gladwell.
Davis quarterback Parker Christiansen threw for 185 yards and running back Mason White had 89 more on the ground, but it was the Darts’ defense that made the difference, holding Taylorsville to minus-19 yards in the first quarter and 14 for the first half.
Taylorsville, which fell to 2-1 overall, didn’t show any of the big-play capability that appeared in its earlier wins over Kearns and Murray.
“Maybe it was the glitz and (TV) cameras. It was a big deal for Taylorsville,” said Warriors coach Rod Wells. “We knew going in that we had to play mistake-free. Were we cursed tonight?”
The mistakes started on the Warriors' first drive, which ended in a three-and-out. Davis got good field position and several White runs led to a 23-yard field goal by Chase Clampitt.
Less than a minute later, Connor Taylor intercepted a pass and returned it 26 yards to the Taylorsville 19-yard line. Two plays later, running back Tyree Adams broke several tackles and built the lead to 10-0.
Then, with the first quarter winding down, Taylorsville quarterback Toa Maumau bobbled the snap and accidentally kicked the ball backward trying to pick it up. He finally fell on it in the end zone and the Davis defense celebrated the two-point safety.
“The defense was playing hard and playing fast. They were flying all over the place,” said Gladwell. “We were giving them a lot of problems and that was a big play for us.”
Davis put the game away in the third quarter as Christiansen, White and Adams engineered two touchdown drives. The first one came quickly as Christiansen found Hayden Chisholm open over the middle and Chisholm ran the last 50 yards on his own to finish a 73-yard play.
“They (the Darts) got most of the big plays tonight,” admitted Wells, whose team lost 26-0 at Davis last year. “I don’t mind playing them. They tell us where we are and we have to compete against 5A teams. At least all the problems I saw tonight are correctable.”
Maumau, whose strong arm netted almost 300 passing yards last week, completed 7 of 18 passes for 55 yards and three interceptions. He was pressured continuously.
Taylorsville’s offense only showed some life in the fourth quarter when Kingston Limutau broke loose on a pair of 20-yard runs. The Warriors’ drive ended at the Davis 22 and was the closest they came to scoring.
Bruce Smith grew up in Boise, Idaho, and is a longtime newspaper sports writer. He writes primarily high-school sports articles for the Deseret News.