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High school football: Alta Hawks 2020 preview

Here’s an in-depth look at the Alta Hawks football team heading into the 2020 season.

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Note: Alta finished with a 5-5 overall record in 2019 and was tied for third in Region 7 with a 3-2 record. It was RPI seed No. 15 in the 5A playoffs, and was eliminated by Provo 44-16 in second round.



SANDY — Last season showed that as a program Alta is close to taking the next step, something it hopes to do in 2020.

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Scott G Winterton, Deseret News


Head Coach: Alema Teo

Entering his sixth year as Alta head coach, compiling a 36-21 record his first five seasons. Teo was Woods Cross’ head coach from 2000-2004 and compiled a 7-42 record. He’s a graduate of Leone High School in American Samoa and Southern Utah University.

Alta posted a modest 5-5 record, but those five losses were all to quality programs — and in the losses to Orem, Skyridge and Timpview, the game was competitive until the end.

Depth in the offensive trenches is what Alta hopes will turn some of those close losses into close wins this season. Six offensive linemen return this season who started at some point last year.

That experience will help new QB Ethan Jackson ease into his role as starter.

Defense is the area Alta needs to make the biggest improvement as it finished 21st in 5A last year allowing 28.5 ppg. That was the biggest issue in last year’s 44-16 playoff ouster to Provo in the 5A second round.

Most of Alta’s returning experience defensively is in the secondary, which should help against the numerous passing teams in the region if the linemen develop as expected.


Alta Hawks at a glance

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2020 Schedule


Aug. 14 — SKYRIDGE, 7 p.m.

Aug. 21 — at Desert Hills, 7 p.m.

Aug. 28 — TOOELE, 7 p.m.

Sept. 4 — at Orem, 7 p.m.

Sept. 11 — at Corner Canyon, 7 p.m.

Sept. 18 — at Mountain Ridge, 7 p.m.

Sept. 25 — TIMPANOGOS, 7 p.m.

Oct. 2 — at Lehi, 7 p.m.

Oct. 8 — at Timpview, 7 p.m.

Alta offensive snapshot

Offensive coordinator: Dave Harrison

2019 offense: 28.4 (12th in 5A)

2019 offensive statistics
  • 6 returning starters
  • Spread offense
Returning offensive starters
  • Wilson Murray (TE)
  • Lawrence Falatea (TE)
  • D’Andre Randolph (WR)
Offensive newcomers to watch
  • Ethan Jackson (QB)
  • Tevita Mafileo (TE)
  • Brock Fabrizio (RB)
  • Micah Kaufusi (WR)
Coach Dave Harrison’s keys for offensive success in 2020:

“We have a new quarterback coming in. His name’s Ethan Jackson, and he has a good arm and he’ll be a junior. And then, really our strength is upfront where we have six guys who started at some point last year.”

“Tight ends are probably our strength on offense, and we have a couple of guys at receiver who are looking real good.”


Alta defensive snapshot

Defensive coordinator: Alema Te’o

2019 defense: 28.5 ppg (21st in 5A)

2019 defensive statistics
  • 4 returning starters
  • 3-4 defense
Returning defensive starters
  • Lawrence Falatea (LB)
  • D’Andre Randolph (DB)
  • Brock Fabrizio (DB)
  • Dylan Thomason (DB)
Defensive newcomers to watch
  • Tevita Mafileo (LB)
Coach Harrison’s keys for offensive success in 2020:

“We’re bigger upfront defensively than we have been, but the key will be to stay healthy, because our numbers aren’t want they used to be here. But we are deeper this year. Probably as deep as we’ve been since we split off from Corner Canyon.”

region7projections
Coaches preseason Region 7 straw poll
  1. Orem
  2. Timpview
  3. Lehi
  4. Alta
  5. Mountain Ridge


Felt’s Facts for Alta High School


  • All-time record: 286-174 (42 years)

  • Region championships: 12 (1984 co, 1985 co, 1988 co, 2000 co, 2003, 2005 co, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 co, 2011, 2016)

  • Playoff appearances: 34
  • All-time playoff record: 47-30

  • State championships: 4 (1983, 1988, 2007, 2008)

  • State championship record: 4-2

  • Most played rivalry: 40 meetings with Brighton dating back to 1978. Brighton leads 22-18.


Last 5 seasons

  • 2019 — 5-5 (3-2 in Region 7 ­– 5A Second round)
  • 2018 ­­­­— 6-5 (2-3 in Region 7 – 5A First round)
  • 2017 ­­­­— 6-5 (3-2 in Region 7 – 5A Quarterfinals)
  • 2016 — 11-2 (6-1 in Region 7 – 5A Semifinals)
  • 2015 — 8-4 (4-2 in Region 7 – 4A Quarterfinals)

Alta coaching history


  • 2015-current — Alema Teo (36-21)
  • 2011-2014 — Bob Stephens (25-20)

  • 2005-2010 — Les Hamilton (60-20)
 *2 state titles
  • 1994-2004 — Mitch Lunak (71-42)

  • 1978-1993 — Doug Berry (94-72)
 *2 state titles

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Deseret News All-State Archives

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Check out our archives of Deseret News all-state teams from 1929 to 2019 at Deseret.com.

Alta All-State at-a-glance

Deseret News Mr. Football recipients

  • 2007 — Boo Andersen, LB

  • 2006 — Sausan Shakerin, RB

Deseret News MVPs the past 10 years

  • 2016 — Josh Davis, RB
Deseret News First Team all-staters the past 10 years

  • 2019 — Daniel Thomason, WR
  • 2019 — Wilson Murray, TE
  • 2017 — MJ Tafisi, MLB
  • 2017 ­­— Zach Engstrom, WR
  • 2016 — Will Dana, QB
  • 2016 — Zach Engstrom, WR
  • 2016 — Hayden Harrison, TE
  • 2016 — Chandler Dolphin, OG
  • 2015 — Josh Davis, RB
  • 2013 — Mack Richards, WR

  • 2012 — Ammon Barker, WR

  • 2011 — Ryan Jensen, DL