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Usual 6A suspects dominate Week 2, but unheralded teams West, Copper Hills building momentum

SHARE Usual 6A suspects dominate Week 2, but unheralded teams West, Copper Hills building momentum
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Action in the Skyridge and Sky View high school football game in Lehi on Friday, Aug. 23, 2019. Skyridge won 18-10.

Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

With Week 2 of high school football in the books, most of the 6A teams you’d expect to be 2-0 — Bingham, Corner Canyon, Lone Peak, Skyridge, etc. — are exactly that.

It’s some of the other 6A teams that are 2-0 that are surprising.

West and Copper Hills, two teams with three combined wins last season, both earned big wins on Friday night to improve to 2-0 on the season.

Both wins came against struggling programs, but it was the convincing manner in which the teams won that gives both programs much to be excited about this season.

Copper Hills had three players score rushing TDs as the Grizzlies methodically pulled away for the 21-0 shutout win over Hillcrest. (box score) Josh Fullmer and Luke Larbee each grabbed interceptions in the win, while Benjamin Bohne recovered a fumble as well.

We are still learning how to win games, and more importantly, how to handle a win in preparation for the following week. We persevered through the onslaught tonight; and that’s a start,” said Copper Hills coach Corey Dodds, who’s now in his third year with the program.

West rolled past Cottonwood 66-13 as Abraham Williams rushed for four touchdowns and Clarence Butler added three scores. (box score)

Hunter is also 2-0 after a 31-8 road win over Clearfield. (box score)

Hunter quarterback DaiSean Cash accounted for five touchdowns (three passing, two rushing) in another dominant performance from the standout athlete.

“We just want to get better every week. Correct the mistakes and control what we can control, which has more to do with ourselves than our opponent. We knew Clearfield would be well-coached and have a good plan and we would need to be better than last week,” said coach Tarell Richards.

“I think there’s something to be said about the RPI system and the fact that every game has meaning and purpose. There’s both pressure and incentive now to play well over the course of an entire 9-10 game season.”

Every win matters in the new RPI playoff seeding by the UHSAA, and it’s not surprising Region 4 teams are rolling along the first two weeks of the season.

American Fork, Canyon View, Lone Peak, Pleasant Grove and Skyridge are all 2-0 after Friday’s wins.

(It’s worth noting that the first release of the RPI ranking by the UHSAA isn’t until Sept. 23).

New American Fork quarterback Maddux Madsen is settling in nicely into his new role as American Fork’s quarterback, throwing for five touchdowns in the 58-35 win over Timpview (box score). He didn’t throw all the TDs though; Hayden Betts also tossed a 51-yard TD to returning all-state receiver Devin Downing.

“It was huge for us to get off to a quick start. Our defense came up with two huge turnovers that led to quick points in the first quarter and that really helped us to set the tone. The game became a back-and-forth battle after that and I loved how our kids responded each time,” said American Fork coach Aaron Behm.

American Fork scored three touchdowns in the opening four minutes, including Taylor Crump’s 21-yard pick-six to give the Cavemen the early 20-0 lead.

Corner Canyon dominated behind another strong defensive performance led by Josh Wilson’s 41-yard interception for a touchdown that opened the scoring in the second quarter. It was one of three interceptions for Corner Canyon, which earned the 31-0 shutout win. (box score)

“Our defense is awesome. They (the Mustangs) took their shots at us and we responded,” Corner Canyon coach Eric Kjar told the Deseret News afterward.

Corner Canyon’s defense ranked second in 5A last year, allowing only 12 ppg, and with seven starters back from that team it has picked up right where it left off. The schedule only gets tougher in Week 3 as Corner Canyon faces Bingham.

Skyridge needed a bit more work to pull out the win and stay with the 6A unbeatens.

“We really had to grind this one out, but we’ll learn from it,” said Skyridge coach Jon Lehman to the Deseret News after the 18-10 win over Sky View. “We need to be more physical from the start, but like I said, Sky View is a good team and (Mason) Falslev is a great player.”

Skyridge only finished with 190 yards of total offense, but the defense forced three Sky View turnovers and also added two safeties.

Lone Peak backed up last week’s big win over Timpview with another strong performance, rolling past Jordan 38-13 (box score) after building a 38-0 halftime lead. JD Neeleman passed for four touchdowns, giving him six on the season.

Pleasant Grove had to grind a bit more for its second straight. It gave up some big plays to Maple Mountain and found itself trailing late in the second quarter, but it took the lead on a Porter Connors 69-yard TD reception shortly before halftime and never looked back in a dominant defensive second half as it pulled away for the 45-21 win (box score).

Pleasant Grove was at its best running the ball as it racked up 288 yards rushing against Maple Mountain, with Jaedyn Maldonado accounting for 114 yards.

Caleb Campbell had a great game through the air as well, completing 14 of 24 passes for 176 yards and four TDs.

“It’s been fun watching some of our players getting the job done now that they are getting the chance to play. Caleb Campbell is a guy our team loves to follow. He isn’t that big, but is extremely determined,” said Pleasant Grove coach Mark Wootton.

Most games on Friday night involving 6A teams were blowouts, but the biggest exception to that was Riverton’s 15-12 win over West Jordan.

With Riverton trailing 12-7 late in the game, quarterback Jaxon Howard hit receiver Hayden Turville on a 6-yard pass to rally the Wolves to the 15-12 win (box score).

Riverton’s only other touchdown came on a Kaleb Hamblin 38-yard interception return in the opening three minutes.

”That was a hard-fought win. West Jordan played a great game, especially on defense. Awesome to see our young Riverton men stay together and keep fighting,” said Riverton coach Jody Morgan.

In Region 1, with region play kicking off next week, things are as uncertain as they were before the start of the season.

Region 1 teams went 1-7 in Week 2, with Weber the only winner after a 28-0 shutout win over Bountiful. (box score)

Weber is the two-time defending Region 1 champion, and with first-year coach Jayson Anderson leading the way, the Warriors hope that wins like Friday’s spur them onto another great season.

Weber got great experience against No. 1 Bingham in Week 1, and even though it lost 41-24, it competed very well, which gave the players loads of confidence for the road game at Bountiful.