The high school track season may still be six months away, but you wouldn't have known it by watching Hillcrest's Zach Johanson Friday night. The talented senior running back rushed for 196 yards and four touchdowns as the Huskies kept their perfect record alive with a 28-14 victory over Riverton.
Johanson gained a number of those yards by literally hurdling over would-be Riverton tacklers. He scored on runs of 11, 6, 74 and 2 yards to move Hillcrest to 4-0 on the year, already a win ahead of last year's 3-6 Huskies team.
"It feels great," the quiet Johanson said postgame. "We're just playing a lot better than last year."
His 11-yard TD run on the first play of the second quarter got the Huskies going, but Riverton answered back after an exchange of punts. The Silverwolves were pinned deep at their own one-yard line after a great punt from Hillcrest's Jon Eastman. Still, they drove 99 yards in 11 plays, scoring on an 11-yard pass from Ben Lail to Skyler Giron to tie the game at 7-all.
Hillcrest went up 14-7 at halftime when Johanson capped a 65-yard drive with a six-yard TD run. At the break, he had 105 yards rushing. On the very first play of the second half, he broke over left tackle and ran 74 yards untouched to make it 21-7. Following a 20-yard return on a Riverton punt, Hillcrest looked poised to score again until Eastman's pass into the endzone was tipped and subsequently intercepted by Colby Jenkins.
The Silverwolves then drove 80 yards in 14 plays, mostly behind the running of Chris Frkovich, who eventually dove in from the one to cut the lead to 21-14 with 2:19 left in the third quarter.
Hillcrest finally broke away for good early in the final quarter. The Huskies got a great kickoff return to the Riverton 46, and Johanson tallied his fourth TD on a two-yard plunge 30 seconds into the quarter.
Both teams exchanged a pair of turnovers after that, as Hillcrest's defense stopped two Riverton drives deep into Huskies' territory for the victory.
Frkovich had a fine game as well, rushing for 129 yards, while Eastman rushed for 55 yards and threw for 44 more for Hillcrest.