SOUTH JORDAN —The way the lopsided contest turned out — a 30-3 blowout in favor of Brighton High — it sure looked like the Bengals scheduled Friday's Homecoming Game so they could rack up a blowout win to appease the returning alumni.
Problem with that theory?
It was Bingham High's homecoming.
The Miners, who had their three-game winning streak snapped, should find a more accommodating patsy next year.
Brighton entered with a 1-3 record, but it exited with a suprisingly convincing outcome, confidence and perhaps, even, a minor quarterback controversy.
Or, as Brighton coach Tom Cushing would prefer to view it, a quarterback luxury.
With the score tied at 3 in the second quarter, junior quarterback Taylor Gleave replaced senior starter Zac Marold and ignited an offensive explosion for the Bengals.
On his first play, Gleave, a slippery 5-foot-10 speedster who had missed several games with an injury, gained 16 yards on a keeper. Randon Carter then dashed downfield 68 yards, and Gleave capped the three-play scoring drive by zipping in for a 4-yard touchdown.
Steve Rees returned an interception 40 yards for a touchdown on Bingham's next series, and the rout was on.
Bingham couldn't contain Brighton's triple ground threat of Gleave, Carter and Mike Wilkinson after that. Gleave scampered for about 80 yards, while Carter and Wilkinson rushed for 100-plus yards apiece. Wilkinson scored Brighton's final two touchdowns.
Cushing said linemen Kevin Clarke, Tyler Whittingham, Aaron Douros, Blake Taylor and Sean Clements had been catching some heat in practice after struggling somewhat early on against tough opponents. But they'll be taking some praise now for their work up front.
"We've been banging on them for a month to step up. They've taking some abuse," Cushing said. "I guess they had enough of it. They had a great game."
The QB switch was planned, Cushing explained, but it worked out way better than expected.
"The way we were running the ball tonight, we decided to stick with Taylor," he said. "He made some nice runs."
Marold certainly didn't just sulk on the sidelines. He turned his linebacker game up a notch and became a playmaker on defense — one of the many on this night for Brighton — with a big sack and an interception.
"He's an absolute class kid," Cushing said. "I'm real proud of how he's playing on both sides of the ball."
Bingham scored first on a 31-yard field goal by A.J. Morris, but the Miners just couldn't capitalize on their few opportunities. It didn't help that quarterback B.J. Baldwin left before halftime with an ankle injury.