6A playoffs

Layton at Copper Hills

The Layton Lancers and Copper Hills Grizzlies will face off in the first round of the 6A playoffs this Friday. This contest marks their first encounter in 17 years, when Copper Hills secured a 28-13 victory in 2006.

Despite a challenging season, both teams are hoping to enjoy some postseason success. The Layton Lancers enter the playoffs with an 0-9 record, having scored an average of 14.6 points per game while allowing 35.3 ppg. Porter Cannon leads the Lancers on the ground, with 534 yards on 106 carries, while quarterback Madden Sargent has completed 98 of 214 passes for 1,165 yards and eight touchdowns.

On the defense, Ian Overton and Dawsen Pimentel stand out as forces to be reckoned with. Copper Hills (4-6) averages 19.7 points per game while its defense has allowed an average of 22.6 points.

Nate Kitchen leads the Grizzlies in rushing with 670 yards and 11 touchdowns on 105 carries, while Maverick Bowles has completed 99 of 196 passes for 1,151 yards and 10 touchdowns without any interceptions. The defense is anchored by Triston Hoggan and Donovan Arnold, who have accumulated 67 and 55 tackles, respectively.

The winner advances to face No. 2 Corner Canyon in the second round of the playoffs.

Westlake at Fremont

Neither Westlake (1-9) nor Fremont (2-8) experienced much success in the regular season, but both hope to put a positive spin on the season when they meet in the 6A first round this Friday.

Westlake has averaged 8.4 points per game over the season while allowing an average of 29 points. Meanwhile, Fremont has proven to be a bit more offensively productive, with a scoring average of 13.6 points per game, but has had defensive struggles allowing an average of 33.2 ppg.

Westlake’s offense is led by running back Derek Anderson and receiver Griffin Faamausili. On the other side of the ball, the Silverwolves are led by quarterback Slade Parker, who has directed the passing game with 1,447 yards and 13 touchdowns. Fremont’s defense is led by Krew Hassel and Ridge Lindley, who have recorded 67 tackles each and six sacks for Lindley.

This is the first meeting between these programs, with the winner advancing to face No. 1 American Fork on Oct. 27.

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Orem’s quarterback Lance Reynolds plays in the high school football season opener against East at East High School in Salt Lake City on Friday, Aug. 11, 2023. | Megan Nielsen, Deseret News

5A Playoffs

Orem at Wasatch

No. 17 Orem will travel to No. 16 Wasatch in the first round of the 5A playoffs. Both teams come into the playoffs with mixed fortunes, Orem with a 4-6 record and Wasatch holding a 3-6 record.

The teams played in the regular season, with Orem dominating Wasatch 44-0. Orem has averaged 30.4 points while allowing 26.2 points, while Wasatch is averaging 25.5 points offensively and then allowing 38.7 ppg defensively.

For Orem, the standout player to watch is Mack Hixson, who has carried the ball 179 times for 1,346 yards and 10 touchdowns. Wasatch will be relying on Carter Bucad on its offensive plays. Bucad has tallied 226 carries for 1,385 yards, averaging 6.13 yards per carry and scoring 12 touchdowns.

Jojo Hyer is Wasatch’s top receiving threat with 75 receptions for 1,133 yards and 12 touchdowns. The winner will have its hands full with No. 1 Timpview waiting in the second round.

Taylorsville at Woods Cross

No. 24 Taylorsville will face off against No. 9 Woods Cross in the first round of the 5A playoffs. Taylorsville, which struggled this season with a 1-9 record and was outscored by its opponents 425-78, will aim to upset Woods Cross, which takes a 6-4 record into the postseason after outscoring their its 328-233.

Taylorsville’s only win of the regular season came after Chatfield, Colorado, was forced to forfeit a 49-0 win over Taylorsville for playing an ineligible player. That win allowed the Warriors to slip into the final 5A playoff spot. Woods Cross, meanwhile, has won four of its last six games.

Taylorsville’s quarterback Cole Kramer has been a standout player, scoring four rushing and six passing touchdowns this season. On Woods Cross’ side, Lock Smoot has led the offense with 646 passing yards and 688 rushing yards. Cash Henderson also had 693 rushing yards on 96 carries with 13 TDs.

On the defensive front, Woods Cross’s Charlie Coats and Cash Henderson stand out with 41 and 44 tackles, respectively, with Henderson also adding two sacks and two interceptions to his tally. The winner will face No. 8 Brighton in the second round.

Hunter at Bonneville

No. 14 Bonneville (5-5) and No. 19 Hunter (5-4) had similar type seasons, so it’s only fitting they meet in the first round to determine who gets a shot at the No. 3 seed.

Hunter’s Lote Sotele accumulated 889 rushing yards and seven touchdowns, while Kenyon Paea also provided a consistent rushing threat with 654 yards and 10 TDs this season. Quarterback Uluaki Taukiuvea has 694 yards and six touchdowns. Sione Mmanisela leads the defense with 59 tackles.

Bonneville has Jaxon Johnson leading the passing game with 911 yards accompanied by eight touchdowns. Ashton Archuleta and Tifaga Havili led in the running game with 211 yards and four touchdowns, and 299 yards and five touchdowns, respectively. On the defensive front, Tavita Afuvai and Keaton Fuit have 55 and 58 tackles, respectively.

The winning team will be playing No. 3 Roy in the second round.

Northridge at West Jordan

No. 21 Northridge will be looking to pull off a 5A first-round upset when it travels to No. 12 West Jordan on Friday. Northridge (4-6) averages 24.3 points per game while allowing 29.1 points per game.

Leading the offense is quarterback Michael Marriott with 879 passing yards and seven touchdowns, and running back Braxton Barber with 291 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Defensively, Zach Smith leads the team with 111 tackles and five sacks.

On the other side, West Jordan has a 5-5 overall record with an average of 22 points scored per game and 27.1 points allowed per game. The top offensive contributors are quarterback Jackson Roybal with 1,666 passing yards and 19 touchdowns, and Dominic Overby with 1,001 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns.

Defensively, Jaxson Harris leads the team with 64 tackles, six sacks, and one interception. This will be the first meeting between Northridge and West Jordan this season.

The winner will advance to face No. 5 Olympus in the next round of the playoffs.

Viewmont at Maple Mountain

The first round of the 5A playoffs features a first-time matchup when No. 20 Viewmont (4-6) travels to No. 13 Maple Mountain (5-5) on Friday. Maple Mountain and Viewmont have had their share of challenges this season with both teams averaging just under 30 points per game.

Maple Mountain has scored 286 points and conceded 288 points, while Viewmont scored 272 points but gave up 306 points. Going into the playoffs, Viewmont is riding a two-game winning streak with a 28-21 victory over Bonneville and a 46-18 win over Clearfield.

Viewmont QB Daren Tovey has completed 119 of 190 passes for 1,617 yards and 18 TDs. Highlighting the defense, Kellen Wood managed 95 tackles this season. Maple Mountain QB Banks Jackson led his team 99 carries for 889 yards and 10 touchdowns.

He also completed 129 of 241 passes for 1,669 yards and 14 touchdowns. Defensively, Tiger Hakes and Kavika Bringhurst stood strong with 74 and 50 tackles, respectively. Looking ahead, the winner from this first-round duel between Viewmont and Maple Mountain will advance to a game against No. 4 Box Elder.

East at Kearns

No. 18 East will travel to No. 15 Kearns in an intriguing 5A first-round matchup. The Leopards played a difficult schedule and only won four games this season, while Kearns has only prevailed in one more game with a 5-5 record.

The Leopards enter the playoff averaging 23.3 ppg while allowing 21.4 ppg. It will lean on Michael Nunu Fonua, who has amassed a total of 601 yards and eight touchdowns this season. On the defensive side, standout players include John Amone, who has recorded 55 tackles and one pass interception, and Papaseea Matelau with 52 tackles and 13 sacks.

The Kearns Cougars score an average of 29.1 points while conceding 24.4 points per game. Kearns’ Kymani Fauatea and Teki Finau lead in rushing. Fautea leads with 788 yards and 12 touchdowns and Finau is right behind him with 721 yards and eight touchdowns. QB Bryce Benson has passed for 1,386 passing yards and eight touchdowns. Kearns’ defense has Ryan Talo with 61 tackles and nine sacks, and Lione Hola with a total of 85 tackles.

No. 2 Springville awaits the winner in the second round of the 5A playoffs.

Highland at Alta

No. 11 Alta (7-3) hopes its 5A first-round playoff meeting with No. 22 Highland goes the same way as the regular season, which the Hawks rolled to the 34-14 victory. Highland (3-6) hopes to get a win and break its four-game losing streak.

Highland’s Manasa Pela leads the way with seven passing touchdowns and three rushing touchdowns. Alta is entering the playoffs on a three-game winning streak with wins over Brighton, Skyline and Cedar Valley.

The Hawks have scored an average of 32.7 points while allowing 17.6 points. Standout QB Kepa Niumeitolu has 1,673 passing yards and 12 touchdowns for the Hawks. Alta’s ground game is led by Anthony Cottis and Matt McKea, combining for a total of 866 yards and 14 touchdowns. Defensively, Kalvin Liava leads with 82 tackles and three sacks, with Peizge Mailei behind him with 69 tackles, three sacks, and two interceptions.

The winner will progress to face No. 6 West in the second round on Oct. 27.

Cedar Valley at Bountiful

In the first round of the 5A playoffs, the No. 23 Cedar Valley (2-8) faces a very tough test traveling to No. 10 seed Bountiful (6-4). The Redhawks enter the playoffs averaging 28.9 points while allowing 22.1 points.

Cedar Valley, on the other hand, has allowed 38.9 points, only scoring 20.4 of its own. Cedar Valley’s top runner is Chevas Gregory with 1,154 yards and 13 touchdowns. Gavin Killian follows with 313 yards and three touchdowns. On the defensive end, Nate Banry stands out with 53 tackles and five sacks, and Chase Webb with 73 tackles and one interception.

For Bountiful, Siaki Fekitoa leads with 426 rushing yards and four touchdowns. Quarterback Emerson Geilman has passed for 1,753 yards and 15 touchdowns, while Faletau Satuala has caught 33 passes for 481 yards and six touchdowns. On defense, Creed Shirley has recorded 96 tackles and 4 sacks.

The winner of this matchup will move on to face No. 7 Granger in the second round of the playoffs.

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Park City’s Tyler Montzingo dives past Stansbury’s Xaviah Patch to score a touchdown during a football game at Park City High School in Park City on Friday, Sept. 15, 2023. Park City won 21-17. | Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

4A playoffs

Logan at Dixie

The 4A high school football playoffs kick off on Oct. 20 with No. 13 Dixie High School hosting No. 20 Logan High School. Dixie enters with an overall record of 4-6, while Logan is 2-7 for the season.

Logan’s team will need to rely on its top performer, quarterback Keaton Pond, who has completed 112 of 199 passes for a total of 1,409 yards and 14 TDs. However, its defense has struggled, allowing an average 36.5 points per game. Dixie averages 21.8 points per game, while their opponents average 27.8 points.

The Flyers will count on their standout quarterback Wyatt Truman, who has thrown for 1,463 yards and 14 touchdowns this season. On the ground, the team has Sylas Russel and Ran Sawyer, who combined for 701 yards and eight touchdowns. The two teams did not meet up in the regular season, but they shared one common opponent, Pine View.

Dixie narrowly defeated Pine View 29-28, while Logan lost 43-19. Logan defeated Juan Diego in early September, but has now lost five in a row. Dixie lost its final two games of the season, but won three of the last five. The winner will face No. 4 seed Park City in the second round on Oct. 27.

Mountain View at Payson

In the first round of 4A high school football action, the Payson Lions (5-5) will host Mountain View (3-7). The teams met earlier this year with Payson shutting out Mountain View 27-0. With a three-game losing streak against Payson since 2018, Mountain View will be pushing hard to overcome its past results.

Payson’s offense is led by quarterback Kade Edwards, who completed 147 of 269 passes for 1,953 yards, and Cooper Swasey, with 859 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns. The defense is strengthened by players like Tanner Ivers, with a team-leading 77 tackles, and Colby Olsen with 65 tackles.

For Mountain View, Dexton Havea leads in rushing with 10 touchdowns, while Sei Lesa has passed for eight touchdowns. The winner will advance to face Region 8 foe and No. 3 seed Provo in the second round on Oct. 27.

Tooele at Mountain Crest

The Mountain Crest Mustangs (5-5) will host the Tooele Buffaloes (4-6) in the first round of the 4A playoffs Friday. These two teams have not met since 2018, when Mountain Crest recorded a dominant 49-7 win.

For Tooele, Max Fowles led the team in rushing yards with 680 yards while Vaughn Gritzmacher led the team in TDs with eight.

On the Mustangs side, quarterback Casey Crofts will be a player to watch as he’s thrown for 1,619 yards and 16 TDs while Dax Benson has rushed for 634 yards and seven touchdowns. Key defensive players to look out for include Vaughn Gritzmacher for Tooele with 64 tackles, and Karsten Buttars for Mountain Crest with 58 tackles and four sacks. Both teams come into the game with two-game losing streaks, looking to swing momentum in their favor.

The winner of this round will move on to the second round to face No. 5 seed Timpanogos on Oct. 27.

Bear River at Spanish Fork

No. 17 seed Bear River traveling No. 16 seed Spanish Fork on Friday figures to be the most competitive 4A first round game in the playoffs based on their tight seeding. The Bears enter the playoffs with an overall record of 3-7, while the Dons concluded their regular season with a 3-6 tally.

Standout players for the Bears include Tydon Jones, who has racked up 632 yards and eight TDs on the ground, and the quarterback, Owen Olsen, who led Bear River with 2,312 yards and 23 TDs. Tyson Braegger plays a pivotal role on defense with 38 tackles and four interceptions.

For Spanish Fork, Kaden Vest has been its most consistent performer, amassing 1,272 yards and 11 TDs. The Dons have also relied on McKay Smith as he’s thrown for 1,745 yards and 14 TDs. On the defensive side, Kyle Topham has held the line strong with 55 tackles. Bear River enters the game with a five-game losing streak, while Spanish Fork comes in with a four-game slide.

The team that emerges victorious will take on No. 1 Sky View on Oct. 27 in the second round.

Uintah at Salem Hills

The records for No. 24 seed Uintah (2-8) and No. 9 Salem Hills (7-3) have been drastically different this season, but when they met in the regular season in Week 7 the outcome was much closer than expected, with Salem Hills narrowly winning 27-20. A similar scenario could play out when they meet in the 4A first round this Friday.

The Utes have struggled otherwise, winning only two games during the regular season. Key players are Dace O’Bagy, who tallied 763 rushing yards and 10 TDs, JD Pickup with 1,311 passing yards and 10 TDs and Jaron Colton with 264 receiving yards will need to have big games.

Defensively, the Utes will lean on Brody Rhoades with 33 tackles and Jed Vanderwalk with two interceptions and two defensive touchdowns.

The Skyhawks, fresh off their third-place Region 8 finish, will rely on standouts like Roper Kay with 796 rushing yards and eight TDs, Jedi Nelson with 1,236 passing yards and eight TDs, and Kort Stewart 458 receiving yards and three TDs to maintain their momentum.

The SkyHawks will turn to Tate Allred on defense with his team-leading 69 tackles and two interceptions, and Alex Cloward, who boasts six sacks. Salem Hills won its regular season finale against Bear River, and a win would extend its winning streak to two games, while Uintah comes into the game on a two-game losing streak.

The winner is set to take on the No. 8 seed Green Canyon in the second round.

Pine View at Cedar City

Region foes No. 18 seed Pine View and the No. 15 seed Cedar City will square off in the 4A first round on Friday. Both teams boast a 3-6 record, but in a head-to-head encounter in Week 8, the Reds had the upper hand, defeating the Panthers 28-15. However, both teams carry losing streaks into the playoffs, meaning Friday’s match will be a hard-fought redemption battle for both sides.

For the Panthers, their offense has been powered by QB Adam Moore, who has completed 169 of 261 passes for 2,325 yards and 19 TDs. On the ground, the team relies mainly on Mohe Tonga, who has racked up 411 yards and seven touchdowns. Moore’s top target Quincy Jones leads the team with 50 receptions for 966 yards and six TDs. Defensive leaders include Carson Curtis with 35 tackles and four sacks.

The Reds, on the other hand, are led by QB Everett Kelling who’s passed for 1,521 yards and 11 scores. Cedar City’s top two rushers are Tredyn Elliott and Devin Crenshaw, combining for 582 yards and six touchdowns. Elliott and Jonathan Jeter have also been standouts in the receiving game, with Jeter recording 670 yards and seven touchdowns.

On the defensive side, Jacob Ellis enters the game as the top tackler with 80 tackles and five sacks. The winner will have its hands full with No. 2 seed Crimson Cliffs and its high-powered offense.

Hurricane at Desert Hills

When No. 10 seed Desert Hills host No. 23 seed Hurricane in the 4A first round this Friday, it will be looking to repeat its 56-18 triumph over Hurricane from just a few weeks ago in Week 9.

The Tigers (2-8) are led by quarterback Dylyn Gabriel, who has thrown for 982 yards and seven touchdowns.

Defending state champion Desert Hills (5-4) enters the playoffs hoping to rediscover the magic of last year’s playoff run. Tytan Mason leads the way offensively for the Thunder with 1,403 yards and a whopping 19 TDs. Quarterback Beau Wall has passed for 831 yards and five TDs.

The winner will advance to face No. 7 seed Snow Canyon on Oct. 27.

Jordan at Stansbury

The first round of the high school football 4A playoffs will include a rematch between the Jordan Beetdiggers (3-6) and the Stansbury Stallions (6-4) on Friday. In their previous meeting on Sept. 8, the Stallions dominated with the 40-8 victory.

Jordan will surely be seeking revenge in this matchup. Both teams come into this playoff round with winning streaks. The Beetdiggers defeated Hillcrest 14-13 in their final contest of the season, whereas the Stallions are coming off wins over Tooele, Murray and Hillcrest.

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For Jordan, eyes will be on wide receiver Derell Nichols, who has churned out 66 receptions for 1,122 yards and 16 TDs. Nichols is a key defensively as well with 47 tackles.

Stansbury will lean on its workhorse, Tyson Ferry, who has recorded 766 yards and 10 touchdowns on the ground, alongside Alex Geovijan, contributing with six touchdowns and 349 yards. Defensively, Luke Daynes leads the way with 81 tackles.

The winner will face off against No. 6 seed Ridgeline in the second round on Oct. 27.

This report was compiled with the assistance of ChatGPT.

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