The San Juan Bronco football team hit the road on September 13 for their first of two road games, picking up a win against North Sevier.
Friday the 13th might mean bad luck for some, but the Broncos notched their first region win and evened their overall record at 2-2.
San Juan’s defense took the field first after they won the coin toss, chose to defer and kicked off to start the game.
After a quick three and out, the Bronco offense took the field and marched 37 yards to the end zone.
The drive was capped off by Max Morley when he punched it in from five yards out. Kasper Pedersen added the PAT and the Broncos took the early lead, 7-0.
The Bronco defense rose to the occasion again as it stifled another Wolf possession. San Juan picked up right where they left off when the offense took to the field again. That success was short lived as a holding penalty soon backed the Broncos up to a first and twenty.
After an incomplete pass on first down, Jens Grover managed to get 11 of those yards back on second down. Two plays later, after a failed conversion attempt on fourth and 3, the Broncos turned the ball over on downs.
The two teams exchanged punts for much of the rest of the first quarter.
The Broncos defense decided they’d seen enough of that and came to life driving the Wolves backwards.
Two big sacks by Jens Grover (-16 yards) and Brayden Giddings (-11 yards) set the Wolves back on their own four yard line.
On the next play, the North Sevier running back bobbled and dropped a lateral pass. Hayden Brown tried to jump on the ball, but the Wolves recovered, resulting in a safety and a 9-0 Bronco lead.
Down by nine points, the Wolves came alive marching the ball down the field on their next possession for the score. The PAT missed, bringing the score to 9-6, where it stayed until the half.
The second half didn’t start off too well for the Broncos after a less-than stellar kickoff return found them on their own 15 yard line.
The bad field position didn’t last long, however, as Morley broke a tackle in the backfield on a busted play and proceeded to outrun the rest of the Wolves defense the remaining 85 yards to the end zone. Pedersen again booted the PAT, and the Broncos extended their lead to ten points, 16-6.
Just when the Broncos thought they had a little breathing room, the Wolves battled back. After a solid kick return put them on their 45 yard line, they proceeded to drive 55 yards on nine plays to pay dirt. The PAT was blocked by San Juan’s Easton Lee, and the score remained 16-12.
San Juan was again unable to get the offense rolling on their next drive, going three and out. North Sevier took over in pretty decent field position on their own 37 yard line, but back-to-back penalties, a false start and a hold found them on their own 22.
The next play Brown and Sterling Black sacked the Wolves QB at the nine yard line forcing the Wolves to punt on fourth and long.
After a good punt return by junior Brittain Bowring, the Broncos took over with great field possession on the Wolf 23 yard line.
San Juan’s rushing attack answered the call again as Grover, Morley and Terrance Tate each carried the ball on the drive, which ended when Tate snuck across the goal line for the final Bronco score. Pedersen’s kick was true, and San Juan led 23-18.
Just like a bad dream, the Wolves wouldn’t go quietly into the night, marching the ball down to the Broncos two yard line before falling short on a fourth and goal when Grant Laws batted a would-be touchdown pass to the ground.
Two possessions later, the Broncos went back to the ground, driving the ball down the field to the one yard line before lining up in the victory formation and taking a knee as the final seconds ticked off the clock.
Offensively, the Broncos were led by Morley, who had 114 yards rushing on six carries along with two rushing touchdowns.
Morley was followed by Grover who added 80 yards on 13 attempts. Tate and Payton Palmer both carried the ball six times for 19 and 20 yards respectively.
Defensively, San Juan was led by Grover who logged 15 tackles and a sack. He was followed by Trason Jack with seven stops; Hayden Brown and Grant Laws each had six tackles.
Next was Brayden Giddings, Chase Richmond and Sterling Black with four tackles and a sack each.
Black also forced a fumble that was recovered by Richmond. Tate and Brittain Bowring had three tackles, followed by DiQuan Lopez with two. Morley, Lee, Payton Palmer and Chase Palmer each had one stop respectively.
San Juan will climb back aboard the bus next Friday, September 20 and head west, where they will take on Parowan.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.