Friday night at Pine View High school, the Flyers (4-0) and Panthers (2-2) made battle and produced a classis Region 9 football contest that ended with Dixie winning 35-33.
Flyers’ sophomore quarterback Blake Barney and Panthers’ freshman quarterback Kody Wilstead put on a show as if they were two gunslingers meeting at the O.K. Corral.
Barney amassed 253 yards on 16-of-28 passing and three touchdowns (three interceptions).
Wilstead went 6-of-13 for 187 yards and threw two touchdowns (one interception).
There were four lead changes and ultimately, the game was not decided until 13 seconds remained on the clock.
Right from the start though, both teams showed capability of making plays.
Pine View started the scoring when they marched 77 yards on seven plays on the game’s opening possession. Panther running back Prentiss Miller scored on a 24-yard rush capping a three-minute drive that consisted of all running plays. Starting quarterback Braxton Peterson ran twice for 36 yards and Miller picked up the rest of the drive’s yardage that put Pine View up 7-0.
The Flyers responded by driving 61 yards and tied the score when Barney strong-armed a three-yard pass inside the middle of the Pine View defense on a fourth down a goal. Chris Whetten was on the receiving end making the score 7-7 with only seven minutes elapsed in the first quarter.
Though the Flyers were exuberant in answering Pine View’s score, it was tempered due to losing star receiver Tadd Challis on the first play from scrimmage. Challis’s season may be in jeopardy from the injury.
“Well you never know what kids are made of until you play games like this one,” Dixie coach Blaine Monkres said. “We lost Tadd and we lost Chris [Whetton] and other kids stepped up.
“I am real proud of the kids.”
In the second quarter, Pine View’s Peterson fumbled on a run up the middle to give Dixie the short field at the Panther 28-yard line.
The Flyers went four plays and scored when Barney hit Lukas Hildebrandt for a 7-yard touchdown strike making it 14-7 Dixie.
Pine View inserted the freshman Wilstead to changeup the offensive attack with his passing ability.
On a third down and seven, Wilstead fired the big gun of his and hooked up with Jake Arslanian for a 77-yard touchdown pass. The PAT was missed: Dixie 14, Pine View 13.
Dixie punted on its next drive and Pine View started on its 31. The Panthers put together a six-play 69-yard drive, orchestrated by the freshman Wilstead again.
This time he hit Arslanian from 21 yards out. Pine View missed a two-point-try and the score was Pine View 19-14 with four minutes remaining in the first half.
On the second play from their own 22-yard line, Barney showed off his arm-strength by going over the top of the Pine View defense and hitting Hildenbrandt for a 78-yard touchdown making the score 21-19 Dixie.
Dixie had first possession of the second half and started from its 33-yard line. Eight plays later, aided by a defensive holding and a roughing the passer penalties on the Panther defense, the Flyers’ Hildebrandt ran for a four-yard touchdown putting Dixie up 28-19.
Later in the third, Pine View’s Miller rushed for a one-yarder to tighten the score to 28-26 Dixie.
A pivotal play happened before the close of the third quarter when Pine View’s Peterson intercepted Barney at Dixie’s own 20-yard line, but in Peterson’s attempt to run back the interception, he was hit and fumbled the ball, Dixie recovered at their own 19 and escaped great disaster.
The third quarter expired and Dixie started the final twelve minutes of play at their 29-yard line on the same possession Barney had thrown the pick, but got the ball back.
Barney threw a 41-yard pass to Hildebrandt and then fired another pass to Drew Batchelor putting the ball at the Pine View 23-yard line.
Running back Justin Cummings ran in from there increasing the score Dixie 35-26 with 10:23 remaining.
Pine View was intercepted on their next drive by Flyers’ linebacker Jesse Lambert and the Panthers blocked a Dixie field goal attempt after that.
The Panthers punted on its next drive and Dixie took the ball in Pine View territory at the 47 with 5:29 on the clock.
The Flyers went 10-plays and 46 yards to the Panthers’ one-yard line with 1:00 on the clock. After Pine View stuffed Cummings for a one-yard loss, Barney tried to lob a short out pass to the flat but Panthers' defensive lineman Wes Moeai leaped up into the air and snared the floating ball.
Moeai ran 90 yards for the touchdown to excite the home Pine View crowd giving them hope of a miracle comeback at the same time putting a big scare into previously celebratory Dixie crowd.
Pine View made good on the PAT making the score 35-33 with 32.9 seconds remaining.
The dramatic comeback hinged on the outcome of the difficult execution of the ensuing on-side kick attempt by Pine View.
The dramatic comeback was not to be.
Dixie’s Cummings secured the ball safely for the Flyers and they were able to take a knee and finish the game in the victory formation.
The young Barney put on another impressive performance in leading the Flyers, and most likely made a few more believers.
“He’s loves playing the game and he loves getting after it,” Monkres said. “He’s always got a smile on his face, and he embraces challenges.”
Pine View rushed for 291 yards and passed for 187. They lost three fumbles, threw one interception. Braxton Peterson rushed 19 times for 162 yards (one touchdown) and Prentiss Miller gained 130 yards on 21 carries (one touchdown). Jake Arslanian finished with 135 yards on four receptions with two touchdowns.
Brandon Mauia, Ty Matavao and Thor Katoa all registered 13 tackles.
Dixie rushed for 140 yards and passed for 253 and threw three interceptions. Justin Cummings totalled 130 yards of rushing on 24 carries and one touchdown. Lukas Hildebrandt caught six passes for 159 yards (two receiving tds) and rushed for a 9-yard touchdown. Cummings also led the team in tackles with seven total (five solo).
Dixie 7 – 14 – 7 – 7 < 35
Pine View 7 – 12 – 7 – 7 < 33
PV < Peterson 24 run (Baer kick)
D < Whetten 3 pass Barney (Barker kick)
D < Hildebrandt 3 pass Barney (Barker kick)
PV < Arslanian 77 pass Wilstead (PAT failed)
PV < Arslanian 21 pass Wilstead (two point failed)
D < Hildebrandt 78 pass Barney (Barker kick)
D < Hildebrandt 4 run (Barker kick)
PV < Miller 1 run (Baer kick)
D < Cummings 23 run (Barker kick)
PV < Moeai 88 interception return (Baer kick)
REGION 9 STANDINGS:
Dixie 1-0 (4-0 overall)
Hurricane 1-0 (4-0)
Desert Hills 1-0 (3-1)
Canyon View 0-1 (2-1)
Pine View 0-1 (2-2)
Cedar 0-1 (0-4)
Snow Canyon 0-0 (1-2)