SPANISH FORK — Worries that the Box Elder Bees might not be ready for the state 4-A football playoffs were unfounded.
The Bees shut down Region 8 runner-up Maple Mountain 20-0 to open playoff action on Friday afternoon.
While the Bees got plenty of offense from Shad Watson and Co., it was the Box Elder defense that proved to be the key to victory.
Morgan and Bear River also rode their defenses to improvessive opening wins in the 3-A playoffs.
After a scorless first quarter, Watson and McKay Parrish hooked up on a 7-yard TD pass. Later in the quarter, Watson capped a drive with a 5-yard TD scamper and Kai Allen finished the scoring with a 3-yard burst into the end zone.
From there, Box Elder’s defense was dominant enough. The Bees move on to meet the winner of today’s East-Herriman matchup.
• MORGAN 30, JUDGE MEMORIAL 0: At Morgan, Matt Murdock and Bridger Anderson led a strong Trojans defense to another first-round win.
Lanzten Toomer scored the first and last TD of the game, but it was K.T. Tibbitts’ 87-yard kickoff return that got the Morgan crowd energized and deflated the Bulldogs’ hopes.
Ben Saunders and Tibbitts hooked up on a 31-yard TD pass as well.
Morgan limited Judge to about 80 yards of total offense.
• BEAR RIVER 36, WASATCH 6: At Heber City, the visiting Bears came within a final-quarter score of a shutuout by dominating the game with a powerful running attack.
Bear River got 188 rushing yards and four TDs from Kyle Zundel, and 165 yards and a TD from Jeramie Selman to run past the Wasps.
The Bears will now meet Desert Hills.