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Corner Canyon's Cole Hagen looks to pass the ball as they and Jordan play play on Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018. Corner Canyon won 28-20.

Corner Canyon (11-0) vs. Skyridge (11-1)

5A state championship

Friday, 6 p.m. (At Rice-Eccles Stadium) | Watch live

Parry’s Power Guide: Corner Canyon by 7

All-time series: Skyridge leads 2-0

Coach vs. coach: Skyridge’s Jon Lehman leads Corner Canyon’s Eric Kjar, 1-0

Last meeting: Nov. 9, 2017 — Skyridge 34, Corner Canyon 33

It was the game that defined two seasons, and then the next 12 months as well.

For second-year Skyridge, last year’s unlikely come-from-behind win over Corner Canyon in the semifinals was the biggest win in the program’s short history and established it as one of the best in 5A.

For top-ranked Corner Canyon, squandering a 19-point lead and losing to Skyridge 34-33 in the semifinals was a brutal pill to swallow. The heartache was immediately followed by a determination to work even harder a year later, with the players coining the 2018 season their “revenge tour.”

A year later, it’s only fitting that their season will once again be defined by the outcome of Corner Canyon vs. Skyridge at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

No. 1 Corner Canyon marches into the showdown at 6 p.m. with another undefeated record while No. 2 Skyridge has won 11 straight games since a season-opening loss to Riverton.

Both coaches know it will take their best effort of the season to claim the first state championship in school history.

“These guys (Corner Canyon) will stretch you in a lot of different ways. You really have to play four quarters to get them,” said Skyridge coach Jon Lehman.

Last week Olympus had Corner Canyon on the ropes the entire second half, but the Chargers persevered and eked out the win with a late touchdown.

Corner Canyon coach Eric Kjar said his team was out of sync throughout most of last week’s semifinal, and a more consistent performance will be key.

“Skyridge has a great defense and their guys fly around, so we’ve got to be more in sync as an offensive unit and execute better,” said Kjar, whose team led 5A in scoring offense averaging 47.2 ppg.

Establishing the run both with Austin Bell and Caden Johnson could be key for Corner Canyon as Skyridge has been incredibly stingy against the pass all season.

Qiling Wang
Skyridge's Jayden Clemons (2) pitches the ball during the 5A semifinal against Roy High School at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City on Friday, Nov. 9, 2018.

For Corner Canyon’s defense, stopping the run absolutely must be the primary focus. Ma’a Notoa has racked up 247 carries for 1,576 yards and 24 touchdowns. He’s a powerful runner but with speed as well and has been a difficult match-up for most teams.

Along with the dual-threat ability of quarterback Jayden Clemons, Skyridge featured the second-best scoring offense in 5A averaging 42.3 ppg.

“They have some good weapons on offense that we have to account for, but I trust our defense that they’ll fly around and take care of business,” said Kjar.

For Lehman, his team is just as confident in all phases of the game and a big reason for that confidence was first established in that semifinal win over a year ago.

“We can just go out and play football, because we understand the other challenges that go with going through the playoffs, the pageantry and the schedule and stuff like that. They’ve been through it, so they are a little more experienced,” said Lehman.

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Corner Canyon statistical breakdown

Scoring offense: 47.2 ppg (1st in 5A)

Scoring defense: 11.8 ppg (2nd in 5A)

Passing leader: Cole Hagen (185-290, 63.2%, 3,139 yards, 33 TDs, 12 INTs)

Rushing leaders: Austin Bell (108 carries, 785 yards, 9 TDs), Cole Hagen (90 carries, 592 yards, 9 TDs), Caden Johnson (72 carries, 617 yards, 11 TDs)

Receiving leaders: John Mitchell (49 rec., 1,163 yards, 12 TDs), Noah Kjar (61 rec., 896 yards, 9 TDs)

Tackles leaders: Josh Wilson (81 tackles), Caden Johnson (74 tackles)

Sack leaders: Max Swensen (8.5 sacks), Van Fillinger (4 sacks)

Interception leaders: Andrew McDonald (5 INTs), Josh Wilson (4 INTs)

…….

Skyridge statistical breakdown

Scoring offense: 42.3 ppg (2nd in 5A)

Scoring defense: 18.3 ppg (4th in 5A)

Passing leader: Jayden Clemons (126-246, 51.2%, 2,205 yards, 26 TDs, 11 INTs)

Rushing leaders: Ma’a Notoa (247 carries, 1,576 yards, 24 TDs), Jayden Clemons (104 carries, 897 yards, 10 TDs)

Receiving leaders: Nathan Upham (44 rec., 999 yards, 13 TDs), Dylan Samuels (22 rec., 455 yards, 5 TDs)

Tackles leaders: Ioholani Raass (58 tackles), Mitchell Sampson (55 tackles)

Sack leaders: Ioholani Raass (10 sacks), Blayden Togiai (6 sacks)

Interception leaders: Jaxon Peck (2 INTs)

…….

Felt’s Facts for Corner Canyon High School

Head coach: 2017-Current — Eric Kjar (22-1)

All-time record: 50-20 (6 years)

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Region championships: 4 (2013 co, 2014, 2017, 2018)

Playoff appearances: 5

Current playoff appearance streak: 2 (2017-2018)

All-time playoff record: 9-4

State championships: 0

State championship record: 0-0

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Felt’s Facts for Skyridge High School

Head Coach: 2016-current — Jon Lehman (29-8)

All-time record: 29-8 (3 years)

Region championships: 1 (2018)

Playoff appearances: 2

Current playoff appearance streak: 2 (2017-2018)

All-time playoff record: 6-1

State championships: 0

State championship record: 0-1