American Fork (11-2) vs. Lone Peak (9-3)
6A state championship
Friday, 2:30 p.m. (At Rice-Eccles Stadium) | Watch live
Parry’s Power Guide: American Fork by 2
All-time series: Lone Peak leads 14-8
Coach vs. coach: American Fork coach Aaron Behm and Lone Peak coach Bart Brockbank tied 1-1
Last meeting: Sept. 21, 2018 (week 6) — American Fork 51, Lone Peak 21
Back in week six, American Fork handed Lone Peak a 51-21 loss. On Friday, the two rivals will face off in the 6A championship. The Cavemen will be trying to prove that dominating win wasn’t a fluke, while the Knights will be trying to get revenge on the big stage at Rice-Eccles Stadium. Both teams say they’ve changed since that game.
“I definitely think we’re playing a lot more as a team than we ever did. I think that was our struggle to begin the season, as we played a lot of very talented individuals and we played individualistic as opposed to more as a team. In part, that loss to AF was a catalyst in us becoming or at least buying into the team concept,” Lone Peak head coach Bart Brockbank said.
“I think we’ve matured, gone through some struggles. We went through a tough loss at Bingham, we’ve played seven more football games since then, so I think we’ve just continued to develop to get better and more confident in what we’re doing,” American Fork head coach Aaron Behm said.
Lone Peak quarterback Braden Siri and running back Masen Wake, two key pieces of the team’s offense, were injured in the Knights’ semifinal win over Pleasant Grove, with Wake going out for the game and Siri limited in the victory. Siri has thrown for 1,119 yards, while Wake has rushed for 1,030 yards this year. Brockbank says both are day-by-day. If they can’t go, JD Neeleman, another Lone Peak quarterbacks, has thrown for 649 yards and running back Kobe Freeman has rushed for 516 yards.
“Really talented, all over the football field. Kick returning, skill guys, d-line, linebackers — they have talent all over the place. They like to bring pressure on defense, have a couple really good running backs and some good deep threats on offense, so we know we’re going to have our hands full, we know we need to play our best football here in week 14,” Behm said.
Behm has confidence in his defense’s ability to match up with Lone Peak’s offense.
“I think we matched up really well with them the first time, I would expect the same this time. I think our defense has gotten better, more comfortable in schemes, more comfortable in making adjustments. Our defensive coordinator has done a tremendous job getting these guys prepared week in and week out and I think they’ll do a great job matching up,” Behm said.
American Fork’s offense is headlined by Boone Abbott, who has thrown for 3,908 yards and an incredible 44 touchdowns, leading 6A in passing touchdown by 12 scores.
“He’s tremendous and he’s just gotten better week in and week out. Knowing you have such a good playmaker who is going to get their hands on the ball every play, definitely a good position to be in,” Behm said of Abbott.
Brockbank is confident in his defense’s ability to slow down American Fork. The Knights’ defense was a huge part of Lone Peak’s semifinal win.
“(American Fork has) a great offense, but our defense is playing really well and I anticipate a great battle between those two squads,” Brockbank said. “Offensively, they’ve got a lot of great weapons, and I think we’ve got to focus on obviously, there’s Boone, there’s Chase, there’s Downing, there are those guys that definitely can cause a lot of problems, and I think defensively, we need to be prepared to slow down their offense,” Brockbank said.
Lone Peak’s defense features Jared Fotu (78 tackles, 10.5 sacks), Michael Daley (65 tackles, 20.5 sacks) and Nate Ritchie (five interceptions), while American Fork’s defense features Tanner Vickers (70 tackles), Brock Hughes (63 tackles) and Stockton Bramwell (five interceptions).
Brockbank says the keys to winning the game are winning the turnover battle, sustaining drives, finishing drives, and playing consistent defense. Behm says that execution, eliminating mistakes and winning the turnover battle is key.
American Fork statistical breakdown
Scoring offense: 39.4 ppg (1st in 6A)
Scoring defense: 19.0 ppg (4th in 6A)
Passing leader: Boone Abbott (275-460, 59.8%, 3,908 yards, 44 TDs, 9 INTs)
Rushing leaders: Jaxon Gregory (84 carries, 615 yards, 6 TDs), Boone Abbott (98 carries, 391 yards, 8 TDs)
Receiving leaders: Chase Roberts (82 rec., 1,512 yards, 20 TDs), Devin Downing (70 rec., 1,182 yards, 14 TDs)
Tackles leaders: Tanner Vickers (70 tackles), Brock Hughes (63 tackles)
Sack leaders: Sean Hardman (5 sacks), Bodie Schoonover (4 sacks)
Interception leaders: Stockton Bramwell (5 INTs), Connor Gibb (3 INTs)
Lone Peak statistical breakdown
Scoring offense: 29.3 ppg (7th in 6A)
Scoring defense: 15.9 ppg (2nd in 6A)
Passing leader: Braden Siri (83-170, 48.8%, 1,119 yards, 12 TDs, 9 INTs), JD Neeleman (53-84, 63.1%, 649 yards, 5 TDs, 3 INTs)
Rushing leaders: Masen Wake (152 carries, 1,030 yards, 8 TDs), Kobe Freeman (78 carries, 516 yards, 4 TDs)
Receiving leaders: Thomas Doman (35 rec., 536 yards, 6 TDs), Trajan Hansen (26 rec., 322 yards, 4 TDs), Kobe Freeman (27 rec., 317 yards, 3 TDs)
Tackles leaders: Jared Fotu (78 tackles), Michael Daley (65 tackles)
Sack leaders: Michael Daley (20.5 sacks), Jared Fotu (10.5 sacks)
Interception leaders: Nate Ritchie (5 INTs), Brock McChesney (3 INTs)
Felt’s Facts for American Fork High School
Head coach: 2010-current — Aaron Behm (58-46)
All-time record: 489-323-21 (93 years)
Region championships: 19 (1937, 1938, 1939, 1942, 1953, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1977 co, 1980, 1984, 1995 co, 2007 co, 2014, 2018 co)
Playoff appearances: 40
Current playoff appearance streak: 5 (2014-2018)2 comments on this story
All-time playoff record: 29-37
State championships: 2 (1961, 1962)
State championship record: 2-3
Felt’s Facts for Lone Peak High School
Head Coach: 2017-current — Bart Brockbank (18-6)
All-time record: 190-74 (22 years)
Region championships: 14 (1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 co, 2005, 2009-co, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 co, 2015, 2016, 2018 co)
Playoff appearances: 20
Current playoff appearance streak: 11 (2008-2018)
All-time playoff record: 34-18
State championships: 1 (2011)
State championship record: 1-4