Taylor Cox runs the ball in for a touchdown for Emery.
In what amounted to a must win situation for the Emery Spartan football team, Emery did what needed to be done to secure the win at North Sanpete last Friday night and then the Spartans rejoiced again when word came that Delta defeated Juab in another region contest. It was a complex Friday night with many games having consequences for many teams in 3-A football. When the dust settled, Emery finished with the third place seed in region 12 and Morgan finished with the second place seed in region 11 and those two teams will now meet this Friday for the opportunity to advance in the state tournament.
The first thing that needed to occur for the Spartans was the defeat of the Hawks in their final region game of the season. Although the Hawks were winless so far in region play, they had played most games competitively and the Spartans could not afford to overlook them. Emery did not and won the game easily 48-28.
North Sanpete received the opening kick-off and marched 46 yards to score and grab the early lead at 6-0. The Hawks benefited from a short Spartan kick and three penalties in that drive by Emery to get that first score of the night.
Emery lost no time in grabbing the lead though. They started their first series on their 30-yard line and scored seven plays later on a 6-yard run by Taylor Cox. Bryan Clark's extra point kick was good and Emery led 7-6. The big play in the series was a 49-yard pass from Derek Tuttle to JT Noyes.
Emery held the Hawks defensively on the next series and then scored again the next time they had the ball. Tuttle threw a pass to Kashe Potter and he would score on a play that covered 34 yards. Emery's drive started at their 40-yard line and again they scored in seven plays. Again Clark hit the extra point and Emery led 14-6.
North Sanpete scored for the second time on the night on their next drive and the score was now 14-12.
Emery wasted no time in putting distance between them and the Hawks as they scored on their next two drives. On the first drive, Emery started at their 15-yard line and scored on an 8-play drive. Potter caught another Tuttle pass with the play covering 40 yards and Colton Fasselin had a 21-yard run before Noyes scored on a 7-yard run as Emery now led 20-12.
On the next North Sanpete drive, the Hawks fumbled on their first play and Emery's Clay Collard recovered at the Hawk 32 yard line. Emery then scored on their first play, a pass from Tuttle to Cox. Emery now led 26-12. Emery finished the first half knocking at the door but could not get into the end zone as the Emery drive stalled at the Hawk 14 yard line. In the first half, Emery intercepted two Hawk passes, one by Noyes and one by Nathan Mecham. Emery also recovered two fumbles, the one by Collard and the other by Corey Hansen.
In the second half, Emery would score three more times and the Hawks would add two scores to get to the final score. Emery scored first on a 17-yard pass from Tuttle to Tanner Procarione. Emery scored next on a 66-yard pass from Tuttle to Potter and the final score came on a 12-yard run by Cox.
Emery had 246 yards of offense in the first half and 256 yards in the second half to finish with 502 yards of offense in the game. Emery had 260 yards through the air and 242 yards on the ground. Tuttle was seven for 14 in the game for those 260 yards and four touchdowns. His shortest completion went for 17 yards.
JT Noyes led the way on the ground with 15 carries for 68 yards. Cory Hansen had 55 yards from the fullback position and Fasselin had 24 yards there also. Derrick Allred who left being a fullback at the beginning of the season to be an offensive guard rushed for 29 yards in four carries. Cox had 33 yards. Kashe Potter led the receivers with three receptions for 140 yards and two touchdowns.
Morgan finished second in region 11 and will host Emery this Friday in a game that starts at 3 p.m. Manti finished first in region 12 with Delta finishing second and those teams will host games this week. Juab took the fourth slot and will now travel to Juan Diego.