|Jordan Gee puts the tackle on the ball carrier.|
After having come close the week before, the Emery Spartans came home for their home opener and their homecoming football game and made the most of it as they won 42-6 over the Monticello Buckaroos.
After a Ryan Draper kickoff return of 18 yards, on the very first play from scrimmage Dave Justice took the pitch to the right side and did not stop until he hit the end zone. The play went for 67 yards and the touchdown. Emery led 7-0 sixteen seconds into the game. That sequence would set the tone for the entire game.
After both teams punted in their next series, that would be Emery's last punt until the fourth quarter. The Spartans were now on a roll. Scoring was now constant for the Spartans and defense did their part to make this a game to be proud of.
On Emery's third series that started at their own 14-yard line, Emery scored again on a 65-yard run by senior Dave Acosta. Acosta also took the hand-off and took it to the right side and sprinted down the sideline for the score. Emery led 14-0 as the first quarter ran down.
The second quarter was also a good one for the Spartans. They would score three more times to lead at the half 35-0. In the first series of the quarter, Draper caught a pass in the left flat from quarterback Dempsey Jeffs and would take it 48 yards for the score. This series started at the Emery 20-yard line.
Emery's Colton Patton blocked a punt on Monticello's next series and Emery took over at the Monticello 27- yard line. Jeffs ran the ball for 12 yards and Justice and Acosta took turns with the ball on this series like on most series and Justice scored from a yard out.
Draper, on the Buckaroo's next punt, momentarily dropped it before it bounced back up to him and he took 22 yards where he was tackled at the Monticello 27 yard line. Justice scored for the third time on a six yard run.
In that first half, Emery's defense held Monticello to 98 yards of offense. Besides the blocked punt, Jordan Gee came up with an interception from his safety position. Players with multiple tackles in the half included Justice, Mike Jones, Wade Bohn, Gee, Steve Giles, Nico Richetti and Ryne Jones.
Under speedup rules, Emery only had the ball two times in the second half. Justice scored again in their first series, this time from 13 yards out and Emery punted in their last series.
Justice ran the ball 16 times for 167 yards and four touchdowns and Acosta ran the ball 10 times for 112 yards and a touchdown.
After the game head coach Jim Jones commented, "Our kids are still getting better. We are starting to execute on both offense and defense and to understand our roles. While we are still young and inexperienced, we are getting better every week." Jones continued, "Regardless of the record that we end up with or that we have right now, we are just getting better each week. We are on the right track."
Ben Lomond 18 Emery 12
In a game from a week ago, Emery narrowly lost by 6 points. Emery had the lead in the fourth quarter but could not contain the Scots best player to keep him contained one more time. He scored on a kick off return.
On their first series of the game, Emery marched from their 20-yard line to the Scots seven yard line for a first and goal. After two runs from Justice that picked up a single yard, Jeffs was sacked for an eight yard loss. A fourth down pass was incomplete and Emery's first chance to score went for naught. Emery's other three first half series started at their own four yard line, 13 yard line and 20 yard line.
Ben Lomond scored a touchdown on an 87-yard pass play with 56 seconds left in the half and then intercepted an Emery pass to set up a field goal with one second left. Just like that, Emery trailed at the half 10-0.
Emery punted after their first series but scored touchdowns on their next two. On the first, Justice completed a pass to Kade Jones for a three-yard touchdown. Justice had a couple of 14-yard runs in the series and Jeffs completed a pass to Draper for 13 yards.
After holding Ben Lomond on the next series and forcing a punt, Emery got great field position as Draper returned the punt 35 yards to the Ben Lomond 32 yard line. Justice would score the touchdown from four yards out. Jeffs completed three passes in the series to get Emery close. Emery now led 12-10 with 4:02 left in the game and the fans could see the team's hard work starting to pay off.
And then came that kickoff return. Emery allowed the returnee to get out side and that was that. Seventy-seven yards later, Ben Lomond took back the lead and won the game 18-12.
Justice ran for 159 yards and a touchdown to lead the Spartans in the game on offense. On defense, Wade Bohn led the effort with eight tackles while Justice, Gee, Mike Jones and Patton each had three. Emery stays at home this week as they host Carbon on Friday night in the first region game of the season.