Box Elder’s football team has cornered the market on late-game excitement.
In Week 4 it came in the form of a 70-yard game-winning touchdown pass with under 90 seconds remaining to beat Green Canyon.
Last week in the region opener at Bountiful, the Bees eked out the 21-20 win in overtime.
Box Elder took the excitement to a completely different level Friday night in a wild 38-36 triple overtime victory over Viewmont to improve to 2-0 in Region 5.
“Our fans definitely get their money's worth when they pay for a ticket. They get their nachos and they sit there all night,” said Box Elder coach Robbie Gunter.
Friday’s game started a bit slow with the Bees only leading 7-0 at halftime. By the end of regulation, the offenses had found a little rhythm with the score tied 14-14. In overtime though, both offenses were unstoppable, scoring touchdowns every time they touched the ball.
In fact the only thing that separated the teams in Week 6 was a two-point conversion. Viewmont scored first in the third overtime on a 2-yard TD run from quarterback Dutcher Lines, but Box Elder sniffed out the play call perfectly on the two-point conversion attempt and forced an incompletion.
On Box Elder’s third overtime possession, Bernard Pena raced 25 yards on the first play to tie the game, and then he pounded it in on the two-point try for the win.
Pena carried the ball 32 times for two touchdowns and a career-high 211 yards on Friday.
Gunter raved about Box Elder’s offensive line in opening holes for Pena all game, but it was a block from unheralded receiver Conner Stevenson that sprang Pena for the 25-yard tying TD.
Pena started to his left on the handoff, but cut back to his right twice where he only had one Viewmont defensive back to beat.
“Conner Stevenson didn’t get a lot of touches but he was blocking and blocking. He was clear away from the play and he stayed on his guy so when Bernard cut clear back across the field, the one block that he had to have was that one from Conner,” said Gunter.
Timely execution like that is why Box Elder is now 5-1 this season.
After Viewmont scored on back-to-back drives in the third quarter to take a 14-7 lead, Box Elder responded right back to tie the game 14-14 on a 78-yard touchdown run from Trent Dickson.Comment on this story
In the first overtime with Box Elder trailing 21-14 and facing a fourth and 11, quarterback Parker Buchanon hit Braxton Moser on a 14-yard TD strike, leveling the game 21-21.
“They just never quit, there were so many times where bad things happened or we made mistakes or Viewmont made a great play, but they shook it off and went on to the next play,” said Gunter.
Box Elder’s coaches wouldn’t be opposed to a few less stressful games over the final four weeks of the regular season, but in the tightly compact Region 5 that’s probably not going to happen.