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Preps of the week

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JOSH DEAN, Lone Peak: Thanks in large part to the outstanding leadership and talent of Josh Dean, the second-year Knights will make their playoff debut this week.

Dean finished the season with a bang, rushing for 221 yards and scoring three touchdowns in Lone Peak's 39-27 victory over Spanish Fork. Dean had a 98-yard kickoff return for a TD, and he scored twice in the fourth quarter on a 21-yard catch and a 73-yard run.Dean rushed for about 1,150 yards and scored 17 TDs in nine games to boost Lone Peak (7-2) to a second-place Region 6 finish this fall. He is also a starting guard for the basketball team and a track sprinter.

"The most important thing about Josh is he never seems to get down," said Lone Peak coach Monte Morgan. "He can be thrown for a five-yard loss and the next play he can break for a 20-yard gain. Knowing him, he'd be quick to point out there were a lot of people up front helping him out."

Dean is an A.P. scholar with a 4.0 GPA while also serving as a student body officer. He was recently honored as a state finalist for the Wendy's High School Heisman award. He was also selected to the Academic All-State team for football.

"You just couldn't ask for a better kid," said Morgan. "He's a very good example to all the kids on our team. I can't say enough about the positive effect he's had on our team."

ILENE DIXON, Mountain View: Wonder who the best all-around athlete in the state is? The search would have to start (and perhaps end) in Orem with the very versatile Ilene Dixon.

Competing in her first prep cross country championship, Dixon blazed to the 5A girls title with a statewide-best time of 18:15. That was 21 seconds quicker than the second-place finisher.

"She just refuses to lose," said Mountain View's Dave Houle, who coaches Dixon in cross country, basketball and track. "I would never bet against her in anything, including tiddlywinks. She has this will to win that is special."

Case in point: Dixon was also a key cog in guiding the Bruins to the 5A soccer finals. She's such a fierce competitor that she played soccer on Thursday and Saturday despite being slowed by pneumonia the day of the cross country meet. Dixon led Mountain View with 22 goals and 10 assists this season.

Dixon can now concentrate on being the starting off-guard for the nationally ranked Bruin hoops team. Then she will hit the track again in three or four events. Last spring, she won the state title in intermediate hurdles for the 5A champs.

"She's the kind that coaches dream about," Houle added of Dixon, who carries a 3.8 GPA. "She's a great student and a great person. If you had a daughter, you'd want her to be just like Ilene."