Riverton • Funny what happens when a team simply stops turning over the ball.
Riverton overcame three first-half turnovers to grind out a 31-14 victory over visiting Northridge on Friday night in the first round of the Class 5A state playoffs.
For their effort just the second playoff victory in school history the Silverwolves (8-2) get a matchup against undefeated Bingham, the top team in the state.
"They are 'Opponent: Week 12,' " Riverton coach Mike Miller said. "We don't look at who we play; we look at opponents. Obviously, they've got to be the team to beat. When you get into the playoffs, you've got to beat them all."
Despite a fumble and two interceptions in the opening half, Riverton led 15-14 at the break. Then the Silverwolves' run game began to wear down the Knights (4-6). Sweeps by Cameron Christensen and Paden Cayias moved the chains and kept the Knights' offense on the sideline.
"We thought things were there inside early, but then we made a few adjustments at halftime to be able to run outside," Miller said. "Early, we couldn't run outside. But our defense really stepped it up in the second half."
Northridge quarterback Ben Jackson threw four interceptions, and the Knights were hurt by a series of penalties. Running back Dayan Lake scored on first-half runs of 3 and 4 yards, and the junior had 101 yards receiving.
Christensen broke two big plays for scores in the first half a 65-yard reception and 31-yard run. Cayias added a 34-yard TD run in the third quarter and a 7-yard score to seal it late.
Riverton joined Region 4 mates Lone Peak, Herriman and Pleasant Grove in the quarterfinals. They wiped out Region 1 from the postseason.
O The Silverwolves earn their second playoff win in school history.
• Riverton's defense intercepts Northridge QB Ben Jackson four times.