Sugar-Salem's Carson Harris sprints to the outside in the Diggers win over South Fremont. Harris ran for 159 yards on 16 carries.

Sugar-Salem’s Carson Harris sprints to the outside in the Diggers’ win over South Fremont. Harris ran for 159 yards on 16 carries.

Sugar-Salem topped rival South Fremont 35-7 Friday to secure the 3A District 6 title with a perfect 2-0 record in district and run its overall win streak to five games. 

Neither team scored in the first quarter.

“I just thought we got off to a slow start,” Sugar-Salem head coach Tyler Richins said. “I don’t know, necessarily, why. I think our first down plays were struggling. We were kind of behind the chains a little bit in the first quarter. We were in predictable type situations, which caused us to struggle a little bit.”

Late in the second quarter Sugar-Salem scored twice on 75 and 42-yard drives where they knifed through the Cougar defense on chunk plays.

Sugar scored late in the third to go up three scores then South rallied with a 13-play, 80-yard drive to draw within two scores.

The Diggers all-but sealed the game with a nine-play, 70 yard drive that took 5:46 off the clock. With 3:22 left Cooper Butikofer nabbed an interception.

Sugar-Salem held all-state quarterback Kaimen Peebles to 12 of 38 passing for 128 yards and snagged two interceptions.They also sacked Peebles four times for a loss of 29 total yards.

“Getting pressure on the quarterback was huge for us tonight,” Richins said. “Just being able to keep him in difficult situations. If you just give him a lot of time to think and make decisions back there, you give him a lot of time to scramble. I thought our kids tackled well and just kind of did a great job putting pressure on the quarterback.”

Running back Carson Harris once again led the Diggers with 16 carries for 159 yards (9.9 yards per carry).

“He just hits the hole so hard,” Richins said. “He’s quick, he has great vision, he’s slippery. He’s tough to see, he’s small but he churns out the yards and he gets yards after contact. He had a great night. He was just feeling it.”

Sugar quarterback Danny Neal completed seven of nine passes for 113 yards and a touchdown. Jonah Schulthies caught five passes for 89 yards and a touchdown.

South Fremont’s Rylan Miller led the Cougars on the ground with eight carries for 25 yards. Cooper Hurt led the Cougars with four catches for 59 yards.

After South Fremont won the battle last year Sugar-Salem has taken it back this season.

“South Fremont’s a great opponent,” Richins said. “They’re well-coached and they’re athletic. They’re a great opponent for us. We enjoy the rivalry with them.”

In addition to securing the district title the win also secures the Diggers a first-round bye in the state playoffs.

“I’m happy for our kids to be able to clean up the win and (secure) the district championship and solidify ourselves a first round bye in the playoffs,” Richins said “Just setting ourselves up for a deep run in the playoffs is our ultimate goal. The district championships are nice. The wins are nice. But, for us, the talk is all about winning another state championship. We feel like this win helps set us up for that opportunity later down the road.”

Sugar-Salem will play its final regular season game next week at Mountain Home and South Fremont will play Teton in St. Anthony.

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