BOCA RATON, Fla. — With his illustrious 15-year head coaching career at Bingham High School finally coming to an end, it is quite fitting that Utah high school football legend Dave Peck went out on a high note.
After capturing his fifth 5A state championship in December — including three of the last five and two straight — Peck and the No. 8 Miners were invited to the first annual High School State Champions Bowl, where they eventually came up short 34-28 in a heartbreaking OT thriller to No. 3 Booker T. Washington, Fla., Saturday night.
The three-time defending Florida 4A state champs came out swinging and took an early lead, but the Miners weren’t about to go down without a fight in their beloved coach’s final game.
Bingham, led by running back Cameron Smith’s three touchdowns, matched Booker T. Washington score-for-score all the way down until the final seconds of the game, and once again, a full 48 minutes was not enough time to decide a winner against a top-3 team as the game headed for overtime deadlocked at 28-28.
Following a key sack and a missed Bingham field goal, Maurice Alexander took a read option into the end zone to seal the victory for his team and extend its impressive winning streak to 41 games.
Despite the heartbreaking loss, Peck and the Miners finally received the national attention and respect they deserve, and officially put Utah high school football on the map.
Ryan Love is a full-time student at the University of Utah studying communications and has been a part-time sportswriter and scoreboarder for the Deseret News since October 2012.
Follow him on Twitter @RLove7724