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The City Journals

Miners fall to region rivals in state football semifinals

Dec 03, 2018 09:28AM ● By Josh McFadden

Peyton Jones runs with the ball during a 20-10 defeat of Herriman in the first round of the playoffs. (Justin Adams/City Journals)

By Josh McFadden | [email protected] 

For the Bingham High School football team, not reaching the state tournament finals is a rare occurrence.

On Sept. 8, the Miners fell in the Class 6A semifinals to American Fork, 28-21, ending Bingham’s season and the hopes of a third straight state championship. Bingham finished the season with an overall record of 10-2 and tied for the Region 4 title with a 3-1 mark.

The Miners rolled into the semifinals with a pair of victories. Bingham defeated Herriman in round one 20-10, after struggling with the Mustangs for much of the game. It took a 3-yard touchdown run from Evona Hall in the fourth quarter to seal the win. 

A week later, on Nov. 2, Bingham had its way with Kearns, posting a 46-0 shutout win. The Miners did most of their damage in the second quarter when it scored 31 points. Peyton Jones threw three touchdown passes and had 131 yards passing on just five completions. His 72-yard touchdown pass to Avi Parikh in the second quarter put his team up 21-0. Defensively, Bingham held Kearns to just 26 yards on the ground.

In the state semifinals, held at Rice-Eccles Stadium on the campus of the University of Utah, Bingham knew it would have its hands full with American Fork. The Miners had slipped by the Cavemen 28-24 on the final game of the regular season Oct. 12, scoring the winning touchdown in the final seconds. 

This time around, the exciting contest went into overtime. 

After a scoreless first quarter, Bingham took a 14-7 lead into the locker room, thanks largely to a pair of TD passes from Jones. His first went to Josh Woolf from 29 yards out in the first quarter. He then connected with Parikh from 31 yards to break a 7-7 tie late in the first half. 

American Fork scored two consecutive touchdowns to go up 21-14 in the fourth quarter. Things were looking dire for the Miners when the Cavemen were driving deep into Bingham territory midway through the fourth quarter. However, Bingham picked off its second pass of the game, setting up a game-tying touchdown when Jones hooked up with Briasen Harward on a 19-yard pass with five minutes to play. 

Neither team got on the board for the rest of regulation, so it went into an extra session. In overtime, American Fork got the ball first and cashed in with a touchdown. Bingham couldn’t overcome a critical penalty and threw an interception on its overtime possession, ending the game with a 28-21 defeat.

The Miners had four turnovers in the contest and was held to 101 yards passing. Andrew Wimmer had 105 yards rushing, while Hall chipped in 73. The Miners had a tough time containing American Fork’s passing attack. The Cavemen completed 30 passes for 346 yards.