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High school football: Contenders rebound from opening losses

For five teams expecting to compete for region titles and playoff berths, the opening weekend of the high school football season two weeks ago did not go well.

Davis, Cottonwood, Lone Peak, Highland and Logan all lost their season openers by at least three touchdowns and collectively they were outscored 221-90. It was an embarrassing way to open the season for traditionally strong programs.

This past weekend order was restored at all five schools. Davis, Cottonwood, Lone Peak, Highland and Logan all improved to 1-1 by outscoring their opponents by a combined 149-67.

Most of the victories came against quality opponents, which should give each school confidence heading into Week 3 and beyond.

Lone Peak picked up the most impressive victory of the quintet, which was particularly surprising considering how thoroughly Bountiful beat the Knights in Week 1, 30-9.

Despite venturing two hours north to Mountain Crest and facing a confident team that trounced Highland in the opener, Lone Peak corrected its first-week turnover issues and rallied for the impressive 23-20 road victory.

"We stressed discipline in practice and it made the difference this week in preparation, and it worked out for us in the game," said Lone Peak coach Tony McGeary.

The Knights can't ease up though, because with Riverton and Brighton on the schedule in the next two weeks, they could just as easily be 1-3 as 3-1.

Highland's 27-3 home victory over Hunter was equally impressive, especially after its awful defensive performance in a 48-27 loss to Mountain Crest in the opener. The Rams were flying to the ball against Hunter and making all of the tackles it failed to do in Week 1.

As the banged-up Rams get healthier, the brutal opener will probably be looked back upon as an aberration.

TOUGH LOSS FOR TIMPVIEW: Timpview defensive lineman Bronson Kaufusi tore his ACL in Friday's win at Highland, Idaho, and will miss the remainder of the football season and basketball season. He'll likely go on a mission after graduation and won't play football again until the 2012 season for BYU.

The injury is also a major blow for a Timpview team trying to win its fourth straight 4A state championship.

ANOTHER CLASSIC: Bingham's 38-34 come-from-behind win over Alta on Friday may have deviated from the typical defensive clashes between the rivals, but not the intensity and drama.

Friday's game at Bingham was the sixth straight game decided by eight points or less, with five of those decided by four points or less.

These teams have met twice annually since the 2006 season, and most people expect them to meet again at Rice-Eccles Stadium this year in the 5A semifinals.

GRID PICKS WINNERS: Tooele's Damon Carter was one of two participants to correctly pick 11 of 12 games in Week 2 of the Deseret News Prep Grid Picks contest. Carter, however, edged Logan's Johnathan Swenson in the tiebreaker by picking a closer final score for the Alta-Bingham game.

Carter wins $50 and a Grid Picks T-shirt for taking first place. Six runner-ups out of 613 entries, including Swenson, also win a Grid Picks T-shirt. They are: Bountiful's Jed Neilson, Delta's Dan Kapelos, Los Angeles' Bruce Borg, Ogden's Mike Russell and Highland's Josh Scoresby.

The Week 3 Grid Picks contest is already under way at deseretnews.com/gridpicks. Picks will be accepted until Friday at 7 p.m.

e-mail: jedward@desnews.com