Taylorsville • One of the highest-scoring teams in the state proved it can do more than play offense.

Alta forced four turnovers and scored two defensive touchdowns in a convincing 63-26 victory against previously unbeaten Taylorsville on Friday night.

Linebacker Mitch Medina returned a fumble in the first half and defensive back Gooch Malieitulua returned an interception in the second half as the Hawks (2-1) continued to prove their poor Week 1 showing was an aberration.

“We stuck to our game plan,” said Medina, whose 30-yard rumble in the second quarter helped Alta to a 42-12 halftime lead. “We played hard and the defense stayed strong. After that first game, we figured out who we are and came together as brothers.”


• Will Dana throws for four first-half touchdowns and McCoy Didericksen scores three times for the high-scoring Hawks.

• Mitch Medina and Gooch Malieitulua each score defensive touchdowns for Alta, which forces four turnovers.

• Taylorsville failed in its attempt to go 3-0 for the first time since 2002.

Alta allowed 72 points in a Week 1 overtime loss to Lehi but has allowed just 33 points over the past two games. Alta limited Taylorsville to just 126 yards passing and held dual threat quarterback Dane Leituala in check most of the night Friday. Taylorsville’s two second-half scores came against Alta reserves.

“We had to make sure we had to get to Leituala and rattle his chain a little bit,” Alta coach Alema Te’o said. “We figured if we could get him to move around, we could force some turnovers. That’s exactly what happened tonight.”

Alta senior receiver McCoy Didericksen scored three touchdowns – one rushing, one receiving and a kickoff return in the game’s final seconds.

Quarterback Will Dana threw for 262 yards and four first-half touchdowns, including a 35-yarder to London Rockwood in the final minute of the first half. The Hawks, who entered the game tied atop Class 5A with 108 points, scored on every possession in the first half.

“We knew we were going to take advantage of their defense,” Didericksen said. “We knew they couldn’t stop us. We came out to prove a point.”

Alta played the final three quarters without top offensive threat Zach Engstrom, who left the game with a jammed right shoulder.