ST. GEORGE — With four seconds left in the game and the ball on the 15-yard line, Pine View called a timeout to draw up one last play.
With the season on the line, Pine View quarterback Tyler Brown dropped back to pass before throwing a strike to Turner Williams in the corner of the end zone to give the Panthers a thrilling 37-35 road victory over top-seeded Desert Hills.
Williams’ touchdown catch marked the sixth lead change of the game in a terrific back-and-forth battle between both sides.
“I can’t even describe how happy I was when I saw the refs hands go up to signal that we had scored,” said Williams. “It’s indescribable. I’m going to remember this for the rest of my life.”
“It was a game for the ages. You live for moments like that,” added Pine View coach Ben Meier. “There wasn’t much time left, so we knew we had to go to the end zone. Coach Crowton drew up a great play, Tyler threw a perfect ball and Williams made a great catch. I couldn’t be happier for both of them.”
It was the second week in a row that Pine View upset a Region 10 opponent, after knocking off Snow Canyon last week.
“We had some tough region losses this year, but that only made us better for it,” said Williams. “We still have a lot to prove and tonight we showed that. Desert Hills is a great team and we knew we had to play our best if we wanted to win.”
Brown threw for 303 yards and a touchdown, and running back Keith Adams rushed for 144 yards and a score to lead the Panthers. Brown’s favorite targets through the air were Tyson Moten, Adams and Williams. The trio combined for 18 catches for 243 yards. Moten, who also had a 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, had a game-high 12 catches for 156 yards.
“Tyson kept making play after play and had another big game for us,” said Meier. “Every time Desert Hills started to get some momentum, he made a big play to swing it back for us.”
After Pine View jumped out to a 23-14 lead midway through the third quarter, the Desert Hills offense came to life as the Thunder scored three touchdowns in the quarter to take a 35-31 lead.
Desert Hills quarterback Noah Fuailetolo threw a 47-yard touchdown pass to Eric Olsen and a 28-yard touchdown to Lincoln Holmes who somehow caught the ball with his left hand with a defender all over him. Tyden Morris, who rushed for nearly 100 yards added a 40-yard touchdown run right before the end of the third quarter.
But Pine View wouldn’t go away as the Panthers kept fighting to the very end.
“Desert Hills was the top team in the region this year and we knew it was going to be a battle,” said Meier. “Our guys didn’t quit. They dug deep and gave everything they had and left it all on the field.”
Pine View finished the game with more than 450 yards of total offense, compared to just 308 for Desert Hills.
With the win, the revenge tour continues for the Panthers in what will be an all-region 10 showdown against Dixie next Friday in the 4A semifinals.