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Logan's Nelson piles up records

At the rate Logan's Riley Nelson is re-writing the record books, some of his records may never be broken.

With one game remaining in the quarterback's career, he already owns five single-season records and two career records.

In Thursday's 59-29 victory over Hurricane, Nelson completed 21-of-28 passes for 412 yards and four touchdowns. He also rushed for 156 yards and four scores.

As a result, he extended the following four records to the following:

Total offense (5,319 yards)

Total touchdowns (77)

Passing touchdowns (50)

Completion (260)

Earlier this year, he also set single-game records with 38 completions in one game and seven touchdown passes in another.

Nelson's eight total touchdowns were the second most in state history. East's Gene Livingston scored 10 touchdowns in a game back in 1919.

Nelson also moved into second place in single-season passing yards with 3,706. He narrowly trails Mountain Crest's Ryan Zimmerman, who passed for 3,857 yards in 2001, and will most likely break the record in next week's championship game.

POPULATION ENVY: Hurricane coach Chris Homer wondered why his team had to play Logan in the semifinal.

"They're a good 4A school," he said. "It's hard for us to take that. It may sound like sour grapes, but fairness doesn't seem to enter into it with the Utah High School Activities Association . . . There's no way a school like us — with 700 students — or Delta — with 470 — should be playing Logan."

Logan was moved to 3A in the realignment last year because the school's enrollment is decreasing. It has 1,201 students enrolled this year. But Pine View, a team that plays in Hurricane's region, has 1,205, and Snow Canyon has 1,100 students.

"I don't know what we'll call it if Pine View plays Logan — maybe the 4B championship," Homer said. "I think it's ridiculous they let them go down (to 3A)."

LONG TIME COMING: By advancing to next Friday's 4A championship, Highland is one win away from its first state championship since 1986.

The Rams beat Bonneville 25-20 in that 4A championship game (that state's largest classification at the time).

Highland's most recent championship game appearance was in 2000, when it lost to Logan 14-0 on a cold day at Weber State University.

SKEWED NUMBERS: The final statistics of the Highland/East game were not as lopsided as the score. The Leopards had possession of the ball for almost 10 minutes more than the Rams and ran 17 more offensive plays. They also only trailed the Rams in first downs by two. Highland was also penalized 65 yards to East's 16. The Leopards converted on third down six times, to only one conversion by the Rams. The turnovers were close, with East committing four and Highland three.

However, the Rams had 403 total yards to 249 for East, and they averaged nine yards per play while the Leopards averaged only four. Highland also had four players with more than 60 yards rushing — Lopeti Ofa ran for 83 yards, Tom Bradley 72, Aton Sykes 64 and Dave Fagergren 61. Receivers Jake Orchard, Sam Bergen and Les Brown each had a reception longer than 20 yards.

In Highland's three playoff wins Bradley has accounted for 10 touchdowns — five throwing and five rushing.

FUN COMPETITION: Mountain Crest's Brady Wootton and Cottonwood's Stanley Havili are two of the premier running backs in the state. Don't think for a minute, however, that Wootton viewed the game as an individual competition.

"I believe he's the best back in the West. He's a stud. He'd run people over, he'd run through tackles, and he'd be dragging people 10 yards downfield," said Wootton.

Havili finished with 206 rushing yards on 24 carries, while Wootton churned out 85 yards on 20 carries.


E-mail: jedward@desnews.com