Hurricane (2-0) pounced on the visiting Jaguars by running roughshod over West Jordan’s defense, and forced six Jaguar turnovers to pick up its second win of the 2011 season.
The Hurricane defense forced a fumble on West Jordan’s first drive only three plays into the game, however, the Tigers did not make anything positive come about from getting the ball on a short field (45-yard line).
The Tigers were without starting quarterback Taylor Parker, due to an injury, but junior Zach Prince filled in admirably. Prince did what good Tigers’ quarterbacks do—they hand the ball to an array of quality runners.
Prince and the Tigers’ offense only produced a three-play sequence but they did move the ball from the 45-yard line into West Jordan’s territory before punting. Taylor Parker, though too injured to play quarterback or his safety position, punted the ball and the Tigers tackled a Jaguars punt returner on the seven-yard line.
West Jordan quarterback Michael Moorehead had to deal with a high snap on the first play of the Jaguars’ second possession. The ball sailed over Moorehead’s reach, he scrambled backwards into the end zone and recovered it, but it resulted in a Hurricane safety making the score 2-0 Tigers.
The Jaguars kicked off as part of the ill fortune of being caught in your own end zone. The Tigers returned the kick to their own 39-yard line.
A sign of the future happened on the next play.
Hurricane fullback Brian Scott took the handoff from Prince and ripped a 61-yard touchdown run for paydirt. The Tigers missed the PAT attempt, making the score 8-0. The play call was a perfect counter to West Jordan’s blitz and the Tigers’ offensive line made the Jaguars pay.
Scott credited his long rumble to teammates and personal preparation.
“The linemen had awesome blocks,” Scott said. “I just came through the line really fast and got low.
“I was hoping I had enough speed. I did not want someone to get me by the ankles.”
Asked what was on his mind when running that far, Scott said training concepts were what his thoughts consisted of.
“Keep loose up top,” Scott said. “Just relax and let your feet take it.”
He let his feet take it for much more in the game after that eye-opening jaunt on the Hansen Stadium field turf.
Scott finished with 182 yards on 24 carries with four touchdowns. His 7.6 yards per carry were just the right output to combat a 5A team from the Wasatch Front.
When the Tigers did not ride Scott’s broad shoulders for nice chain-moving gains, Weston Yardley (94 yards on eight carries) and Adam Thompson (62 yards on nine rushes) ran wide against Jaguar defenders for big yardage as well.
Hurricane coach Chris Homer was pleased with the performance of the depth on the Tigers’ squad.
“Brian Scott had a huge second half and Weston Yardley demonstrated big heart,” Homer said. “Kids just stepped up for us tonight. We are pretty fortunate.”
In all, the Tigers rushed 52 times for 336 yards. The offensive line mauled the Jaguars defense.
Hurricane offensive linemen Kevin Mortensen was part of the power game.
“I think the heat kind of hurt them a bit,” Mortensen said. “But we just kind of hit them in the mouth and kept moving it forward.”
Mortensen was not discriminatory about his contributions in the game. He produced on defense when not making blocks for Tiger runners. The senior linemen registered 12 total tackles (1.5 for losses). His line mate Bryan Lee tallied nine tackles and four for losses.
“It was fun,” Mortensen said. “I love playing on that side of the ball. I think we were just overpowering them. I think we were better conditioned than they were.”
The Tigers’ defense, even without two top players, was impressive. They registered three interceptions, three fumble recoveries, two sacks, and had 12 tackles for losses.
Parker and Prince are usually big contributors on the defensive side, but others stepped forward and filled in.
“It really hurt us on the defensive side,” Homer said. “Our No.1 and No. 2 safeties were out tonight. Because we had Zach playing quarterback, we kept him out tonight on the defensive side.
“We had a pair of juniors, who have never played a varsity game play at the safety spots. They did okay for us. For the most part, we kept people in front of us and did the job.”
The Tigers have started well by beating a 4A Skyline last week on the road and now disposing a 5A team.
“This may be our hardest preseason ever,” Homer said. “West Jordan looked way more athletic than we do.”
West Jordan 6—8—6—16 < 36
Hurricane 15—20—0—13 < 48
H < safety
H < Scott 61 run
WJ < Perkins 10 pass Moorehead
H < Scott 3 run
H < Seely 79 fumble recovery return
H < Yardley 12 run
H < Yardley 36 interception return
WJ < Duckworth 10 pass Moorehead
WJ < Moorehead 1 run
H < Scott 3 run
H < Scott 13 run
WJ < Moorehead 9 run
WJ < Moorehead 6 run