Blackfoot vs Skyline

Blackfoot vs Skyline

Skyline’s Connor Maloney picks up yardage in Friday’s game at Blackfoot.

After Friday's football game against Madison was canceled due to COVID-19, Bonneville coach Kevin Kempf said the plan is to be back at practice on Monday and play their scheduled game against Skyline on Friday.

Kempf said four players within the program tested positive for COVID-19 and the team was unable to practice last week and eventually the game was canceled due to pandemic guidelines.

"It's a difficult situation," Kempf said. "There's no one to blame … we're working and operating in the middle of a pandemic and crazy things are going to happen."

Kempf, in his first season as head coach, said he's approaching the situation as a learning opportunity for a young team.

"We're using it to our advantage," he said. "We're teaching these kids to be men first and we're teaching them how to overcome adversity."

Skyline wins defensive battle at No. 1 Blackfoot

The 4A football crown lies heavy on the heads of the chosen ones.

In reality, early-season football polls mean very little. A win here or a loss there and the state ranking go all topsy-turvy before the real action even begins.

That was the case Friday night as new 4A state media No. 1 Blackfoot hosted Skyline, which had the honor of being the top team in the state just a week ago before losing to 5A power Rigby.

But rankings were far from the headline in Friday's 4A District 6 showdown as the winner would be in the driver's seat for the district title and playoff positioning after just one game.

It was the kind of matchup that had Skyline coach Scott Berger choked up after his Grizzlies held off the Broncos 14-3 in an intense defensive battle.

"I love the kids and I love Skyline High School," an emotional Berger said following the postgame team huddle. "When you've done this as long as I have, games like this mean so much, so much."

Blackfoot (3-1, 0-1) had averaged nearly 32 points this season, but the Grizzlies (3-1, 1-0) featured 10 returning starters on defense and enough motivation to keep their focus on running back Teegan Thomas and any other weapons the Broncos could throw at them.

Thomas finished with 45 yards on 16 carries and also added 48 yards with eight receptions, but was held out of the end zone. The rest of the Bronco running game accounted for minus-18 yards rushing.

Blackfoot led 3-0 after a field goal by Bryce Cornell, but Skyline took the lead when Connor Maloney hauled in a scoring pass from Cade Marlow. The Grizzlies (3-1, 1-0) added a second score in the third quarter when Marlow found Kenyon Sadiq for a 10-yard touchdown.

Trojans continue to roll

If there’s anyone who knows how to catch Rigby quarterback Tiger Adolpho, it’s Taylor Freeman.

Freeman, who is 1A to Adolpho’s 1 on the Rigby QB depth chart, caught a pair of long touchdown passes Friday night to help the Trojans blank visiting Hillcrest 37-0 on homecoming night.

Bolstering the Rigby receiving corps in the absence of injured stars Trajen Larsen and Colton Edwards, Freeman was squarely in Adolpho’s bullseye all night.

Freeman finished with 102 yards on the night, and had nothing but praise for his throwing buddy.

“He throws a beautiful ball, and it just goes where it needs to go,” Freeman said. “I’ve never had two (touchdowns) before, and it’s pretty sweet to put up 37 against a good team like Hillcrest (on homecoming).”

Scoreless at the end of the first quarter, it appeared early as if Hillcrest was up to the challenge against the defending 5A state champ and No. 2 ranked Trojans.

But a combination of Rigby smash-mouth defense and home-run offense ended any speculation of any upset by the visiting Knights.

The Hillcrest offense struggled to solve the Rigby defense in the first half, managing just 66 yards — all rushing — on 29 first half plays.

Paul Lambert/For the Post Register

Sugar-Salem holds off Marsh Valley in OT

The Diggers held on for a 7-6 overtime win over Marsh Valley in the final seconds.

Neither team scored until the extra session, when Sugar-Salem's Kyzon Garner plunged in for a one-yard rushing touchdown. An extra point later, the Diggers took a 7-0 lead.

On the next possession, Marsh Valley's Bradley Belnap connected with Payton Howe for four yards and a touchdown, drawing the visitors to within 7-6. They wanted to win, apparently, so they went for two.

No dice.

On Marsh Valley's two-point conversion attempt, Belnap's pass fell incomplete, and Sugar-Salem escaped, moving to a spotless 4-0 on the season.

Garner completed 11 of 20 passes for 116 yards and a touchdown for the Diggers, who overcame Marsh Valley running back Michael Belnap's 111 rushing yards.

Shelley picks up second win of the season

The Shelley Russets got exactly what they wanted and probably needed Friday against Canyon Ridge.

They were looking for a better and more sustained defensive effort, they were looking to spread the offense and by doing so spread Canyon Ridge's defense to give them more offensive opportunities.

The coaching staff was able to check all the above boxes as the Russets won 38-14 and improve to 2-2 after going winless a year ago.

“We felt that we needed to get Treyce Jensen to the outside as a receiver and defensive back to spread the other team out and utilize his speed more,” Shelley coach Josh Wells said. “The fact that (Kaden) Kidman stepped up so well tonight shows that we made the right move and kudos to Jensen for making that transition as well. This is a fun team.”

Fred Davis/Bingham News Chronicle

Allan Steele is Sports Editor of the Post Register. Reach him at 208 542-6772 and follow on Twitter at asteele12000