Corner Canyon’s cutthroat offense made sure there was no drama in Friday’s 6A semifinal at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
The Chargers scored on six of their seven first-half possessions, racing to a 35-point lead at halftime, and put things on cruise control in the second half on their way to an easy 48-13 victory over underdog Weber.
Corner Canyon racked up 489 yards of total offense, with senior quarterback Devin Brown leading the way as he passed for 341 yards and six touchdowns.
“We put a really good week into practice and had a lot of film that was really well, and honestly this was probably our best week of practice. The team just looked really good in practice, but we just came out no matter who the opponent was and took them like they were the best ones,” said Brown, who threw five of his touchdowns in the first half, giving him 52 on the season.
Brown made a splash with eight touchdown passes in the season opener, and even though he had a few so-so performances in the middle of the season, he’s hitting his stride with 13 touchdown passes in three playoff games so far.
“He’s been settling in and doing a really good job with our offense,” said Corner Canyon coach Eric Kjar, whose team is one win away from a fourth straight state championship.
With the win Friday, Corner Canyon advances to next Friday’s 6A state championship at 2:30 p.m. at Rice-Eccles Stadium and will face the winner of Friday’s other semifinal between Lone Peak and Skyridge.
Corner Canyon’s only loss of the season was a humbling 41-16 defeat to Lone Peak.
Regardless of that loss, which snapped a state record-tying 48-game winning streak, the Chargers will roll into the final with a 15-game playoff winning streak — and only one of those games was decided by single digits.
“They’re really focused. They know it’s high stakes. Like, if you don’t take care of business you’re out, you go home, and they know what their goal is and they worked so hard and spent a lot of time trying to get to this point and they don’t want anybody to take it from them,” said Kjar of his team.
The Chargers set the tone on the opening drive of the game Friday, marching 76 yards in just over two minutes, with Drew Patterson marching into the end zone nearly untouched for a 16-yard score.
Corner Canyon never looked back.
By halftime, the Chargers had racked up 385 yards of total offense and led Weber 41-6.
“That’s always what we try to do, we want to get the ball first and go and put it on them so the defense can get a stop and then we can go score again,” said Brown.
Brown passed for 261 yards and five touchdowns in the first half. Three of the scores went to Hagen, who finished with five catches for 80 yards. The senior BYU commit now has 49 career receiving touchdowns and is one away from tying former teammate Noah Kjar for second on the career touchdowns receiving list with 50.
All three of Hagen’s TD catches came on similar routes into the corner of the end zone. He now has 74 catches for 1,678 yards and 21 touchdowns this season.
“He is just such a mismatch, and everybody’s played a lot of coverage towards him all year. He’s had a hard time being able to utilize his speed because everybody played coverage a lot to him, so it’s hard to get him freed up sometimes. We were able a couple times today,” said Kjar.
Weber’s lone first-half touchdown came at the 8:23 mark of the second quarter as Amari Swain capped an impressive 84-yard drive with a 15-yard touchdown run, cutting Corner Canyon’s lead to 21-6.
Any momentum generated was quickly lost though, as Corner Canyon scored three more touchdowns before halftime, with Brown connecting with Hagen, Tre Kofe and Blaze DeGracie on three scores.
Even though Weber couldn’t generate consistent success against Corner Canyon’s defense, it did start the second half with a great nine-play scoring drive that Aidan Carter capped with an 11-yard TD pass to BYU commit Cannon DeVries.
The Chargers, however, immediately regained the momentum as Jett Meine caught a wide receiver screen and raced 80 yards into the end zone at the 5:56 mark of the third quarter.