Herald Staff Report
Preston’s players answered the call at halftime, and a strong third quarter made the difference as the Trojans defeated Springville 44-28 in a showdown of teams that entered the game unbeaten in Eight Player, District 4 football Friday night.
The win came one week after Preston (5-1, 5-0 district) lost to fifth-ranked Gilbertville Don Bosco in a non-district contest.
“It was real big,” Preston coach Kevin Behr said of the win. “We really got back to basics this week in practice. The best part of that loss was it showed things we needed to work on and out of district, it didn’t hurt us. We had a good week of practice and came out with a huge victory.”
Tied at halftime, the Trojans scored on the opening drive of the third quarter, got two key fourth-down stops from their defense and added another to create a lead the Orioles couldn’t overcome.
“The third quarter was real big,” Behr said. “We told them they would be in a dogfight and it was going to come down to 24 minutes. We told them they’ve got to take the opening kickoff and score, then get a stop, and they did that. The kids stepped up to the challenge.”
Andrew Driscoll, who led Preston with 148 yards rushing on 14 carries, snapped the 14-14 tie when he scored on a 14-yard run with 9 minutes, 53 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
“We had 300 yards of rushing; that’s a nice night,” Behr said. “They really packed the line of scrimmage. It’s a credit to our linemen.”
Preston’s defense then stopped Springville’s next two possessions on fourth-down runs near midfield.
“We changed a few things schematically at halftime, and our linebackers stepped up their play at halftime,” Behr said. “I thought our mental toughness showed on those defensive stops.”
The Trojans capitalized after the second stop, converting a crucial fourth down of their own. On fourth-and-3, Chase Zaruba took an option pitch from quarterback Colin Larson and raced down the right sideline to the 9-yard line. A couple of plays later, Larson kept the ball and ran it in from the 9 as Preston built a 28-14 lead.
“We had been able to get the edge on them all night on that option play,” Behr said of the fourth-down call. “They were confident. The line did a good job of getting to the second level, and Colin did a nice job getting the ball to Chase in stride.”
Preston pushed the lead to three touchdowns early in the fourth quarter when Larson connected with Logan Wilhelm on a 48-yard pass play.
PRESTON 44, SPRINGVILLE 28
Springville 7 7 0 14 — 28
Preston 7 7 14 16 — 44
S — Elias Nissen 14 pass from Sam Scriver (Brian Allsup kick), 8:16
P — Dalton Milder 3 run (Colton Bormann kick), 3:04
P — Colin Larson 1 run (Bormann kick), 10:18
S — Drake Coonrod 2 run (Allsup kick)
P — Andrew Driscoll 14 run (kick failed), 9:53
P — Larson 9 run (Zaruba run), 2:30
P — Logan Wilhelm 48 pass from Larson (Zaruba run), 10:30
S — Coonrod 1 run (Jesse Robertson pass from Scriver), 6:04
P — Driscoll 6 run (Zaruba pass from Larson), 3:08
S — Jake Hulett 10 pass from Scriver (run failed), :57
RUSHING — Springville, Drake Coonrod 23-70; Preston, Colin Larson 13-93, Andrew Driscoll 14-148, Chase Zaruba 7-46.
PASSING — Springville, Sam Scriver 15-30-1-193; Preston, Larson 2-4-0-55.
RECEIVING — Springville, Jake Hulett 9-114; Preston, Logan Wilhelm 1-48, Driscoll 1-7.