Murray fullback Casey Davies has a simple formula for success: "Go hard and good things will happen."
Three touchdowns, 215 yards and a blocked punt personally backed his theory - the Spartans' 47-14 upset win at Olympus Thursday validated it."We all had an attitude. We came out to play," said Davies. "Olympus is a good team and you can't let down."
The mental preparation paid off as Murray scored on its first three possessions to seize immediate control. The first touchdown, off a 54-yard run by Davies, came just one minute into the contest. Teammate Chris Perschon, who joined Davies with three touchdowns on the night, increased the Spartans' lead to 14-0 when he dashed 51 yards into the end zone less than six minutes later.
Olympus countered with a 70-yard scoring run by Tony Fenton, but Murray responded with a 1-yard run by Davies before the quarter ended.
Leading 20-7, the Spartans outscored the Titans 13-7 in the second frame. Quarterback Dylan Alvey's 25-yard scoring strike to Tyler Jessop preceded a 92-yard gallop by Davies just before the intermission. Following the Murray touchdown with one minute to play, the Titans fired back with a 73-yard touchdown pass from Lance Rice to Zach Green to make it 33-14 at halftime.
Murray closed the books offensively with third quarter touchdowns by Perschon. The first score came on a 34-yard run, while the second came courtesy of a blocked punt by Davies. Perschon scooped up the loose ball and ran 45 yards for a touchdown.
"It wasn't an easy game for us. It was tough," said Murray coach Wade Meier. "We just really prepared hard this week."
Murray's game plan centered around executing its spread wishbone offense and shutting down Oly's notable passing attack.
"We felt we had to get pressure on their quarterback," Meier said in reference to Rice who completed 21 passes for 471 yards and four touchdowns in Oly's 53-24 win at Tooele last week.
The focus paid off as Olympus was forced to punt four times in the pivotal first half. A loss on downs, an interception and a punt followed in the third quarter when Murray pulled safely away.
The Spartans improved to 4-3 in Region 6/7 play with the victory, while the Titans dropped to 5-2. Both playoff-bound teams enter next week's regular season finales with a shot at the league's No. 2 postseason seed. Murray entertains East and Olympus visits West Thursday.