|Number 66, Nick Larsen sacks the Canyon View quarterback in junior varsity action.|
The Emery High Spartans traveled to Cedar City to play the Canyon View Falcons in high school football and lost the game 21-6. That is the short story and the short caption printed in the major papers. But there is more to the story.
This young Spartan team came out to play. The players tackled better, they listened better and they responded better. While it is true that they did not win, they played it more like winners. With a break here or there, or better officiating, Emery would have been playing for a win.
The last three minutes of the first half is a prime example of strangeness. Canyon View attempted a field goal and it was short. Emery picked up the ball and returned it up field just over 30 yards. The score at this time was still 0-0. A penalty was called on the Spartans at the end of the run.
This is where strange began. The penalty was not assessed at the end of the run; it was assessed where the ball was picked up. Emery was now back at the two-yard line.
No decent explanation by officials. Canyon View scored on the next series with a short field following an Emery punt.
The next time the Falcons had the ball came strange call number two. On a Falcon run to the right, a flag was thrown in the area of offensive holding. Somewhere in the middle of the run, Dave Justice of Emery ended up with the ball and started running toward Emery's end zone.
The officials had no idea where the ball was. A whistle blew and a penalty was now called on Emery nullifying a Spartan touchdown. Again, no official explanation. After both bad calls the only thing said to the Emery coaches was "do you want to leave the game?"
Emery did score on their third series of the second half. Dave Justice took the ball in from about six inches out for the touchdown but the big plays were two Emery passes. Dempsey Jeffs, Emery's quarterback, hit wide receiver Jordan Gee twice in the series for big yardage. The first went for 45 yards; Emery's biggest play of the season. The second went for 13 yards and should have been for a touchdown but the official called him out of bounds at the six-inch line. The score was now 14-6.
Canyon View scored once more late in the game and Emery had another opportunity but the pass intended for a wide open Emery receiver was thrown a little hard and Kade Jones never had a chance to catch it. He probably could have walked into the end zone with a catch.
The Emery coaching staff is making progress. The players are getting better. The JV team this week defeated Canyon View 32-0 and the sophomores won 28-8. Coach Jones saw his team "play hard and never quit."
Emery caused and recovered two fumbles and came away with an interception. The first fumble was recovered by Cameron Hansen and the second by Justice. Justice also had the other recovery that was nullified by the officials. The interception was by Ryne Jones.
Wade Bohn and Blake Mortensen, both inside linebackers and Justice, free safety, led the Emery defensive effort. Ryne Jones also approached double-digit tackles for the game from his outside linebacker position.
Emery travels to Ben Lomond High in Ogden this week before coming home for the first time next week.
They will host Monticello in their homecoming game.