After a first half that was much too close for Timpview’s liking, the Thunderbirds were able to contain the Maple Mountain offense in the second half, holding them scoreless on their way to an eventual region-clinching 42-20 victory on Friday.

“This game was all about adjustments. I thought our coaching staff did a great job of containing the Maple Mountain athletes. We still have many things to work on, but I think our guys did an amazing job defensively,” said Timpview head coach Donny Atuaia.

With the victory, Timpview capped off an impressive regular season, compiling an overall record of 7-2 and a perfect 5-0 in region. 

Helaman Casuga was his usual stellar self, connecting on three touchdown passes in the victory, while Aisa Galea’i was able to get on the scoresheet by rushing for two TDs. Galea’i scored on a 5-yard TD run just 45 seconds into the second half which stretched the T-Birds lead to 35-20 and spoiled any hopes of a Maple Mountain upset.

“Helaman is playing a position which requires him to be a leader. Even though he is still so young, the juniors and seniors around have bought in on his work ethic. They want to see him to succeed because we all know how hard he is working.”

Even though it may seem like the victories came easy for Timpview in region play, Atuaia firmly believes that the key to the team’s success is always trusting the process and never forgetting the type of team that they want to be and continue becoming.

“We want to make sure that we are doing our thing and focusing on us. Focusing on the process is very key and so in some ways the result can be a distraction, but we want the process to be our focus and that’s pretty much what we have been doing,” Atuaia said.

By finishing off the season as region champs, Timpview now has a bye before its tournament starts. After falling just short and losing to Lehi in the championship game a year ago, Atuaia knows that his team needs to take advantage of the break and get as healthy as possible if they want a chance to get over the hump and accomplish their ultimate goal.

“We want to focus on getting healthy. Thankfully we have a bye next week and we’ll see how the bracket falls for us. Right now it’s just about healing physically and then we will assess after that.”