Friday night football guide Class 5A quarterfinals
The march toward a date at Rice-Eccles Stadium continues Friday when the Class 5A state football quarterfinals kick off.
A win Friday secures the honor of being one of the last four teams standing in the state as well as a trip to Rice-Eccles next week.
Here's a breakdown of Friday's games, with the help of state high school football guru George Felt's weekly Felt's Facts:
Alta at Syracuse, 5 p.m. • This is a rematch of a first-round game last year, and the Hawks want revenge after falling 16-10. But the roles are reversed this season. Syracuse enters at 10-0 after winning a region title, while Alta is 9-2 and the No. 2 seed from Region 3.
It should be a battle between Syracuse's stingy defense and Alta's potent offense. The Titans are the only team in Class 5A to allow less than 100 points this season. Opponents are averaging just seven points per contest.
Hawks quarterback Chipper Lucero has thrown for 3,106 yards and 34 touchdowns. Ammon Barker leads the way with 54 catches for 1,092 yards and 12 TDs. Mack Richards (790) and Harrison Handley (727) also have topped 700 yards receiving this season. Alta is averaging 34.8 points per game.
Fremont at Bingham, 4 p.m. • Here's another playoff rematch from last season, which the Silver Wolves won 27-20 on their way to losing in the state title game. Of course that was a rematch of the 2010 title game, which Bingham won 30-7, so these programs are familiar with each other at this time of year.
Fremont (4-6) is the lone team left in 5A with a losing record but has won three of its last four. One of its wins came via forfeit against East, a game it lost 43-0 on the field.
Bingham (9-2) is averaging 35 points a game, playing in the quarterfinals for the ninth consecutive season and boasts an .813 winning percentage at home in the playoffs.
Davis at Lone Peak, 4 p.m. • The Darts needed a win just to make the playoffs then slammed Kearns 38-0 in last week's opener for the program's 550th victory in its 97-year history.
Davis (7-4) epitomize offensive balance. Quarterback Gage Cook has thrown for 1,623 yards and 19 scores, while the Darts' rushing attack has piled up 1,539 yards and 16 TDs. Parker Rose leads the Darts with 431 yards rushing, while Cook has added 420 yards.
The reigning state champs needed a touchdown with six minutes left to beat Brighton in the opening round. The defense also helped out when Taylor Nelson returned a blocked punt for a score. The Knights' defense is allowing 12.7 points over its last three games.
Northridge at Jordan, 4 p.m. • The state's highest scoring offense, led by sophomore quarterback Austin Kafentzis, will offer an enormous challenge for the Knights.
Kafentzis already has accounted for 44 touchdowns this season, and that doesn't include the four he scored against East. He's topped 300 yards passing four times and ran for at least 150 yards five times this season.
The Beetdiggers' propensity for points doesn't bode well for the Knights' defense, which has allowed 25 points a game over the last five contests.
5A playoff schedule
Alta at Syracuse, 5 p.m.
Fremont at Bingham, 4 p.m.
Davis at Lone Peak, 4 p.m.
Northridge at Jordan, 4 p.m.
Nov. 8 at Rice-Eccles Stadium
(Alta at Syracuse winner) vs. (Fremont at Bingham winner), 11 a.m.
(Davis at Lone Peak winner) vs. (Northridge at Jordan winner), 2:30 p.m.
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