Carbon plows under Farmers 34-17
|Keith Barker carries the ball against Delta in last weeks loss, but in the Granite game he took a kick return 75 yards for a score against the Farmers. He also took in a pass from Brandon Wilson for another score.|
When the drought ends, it can pour.
Last winter, rain and snow came down in Carbon County, ending a seven year drought that had parched the souls of everyone living here.
Last Friday night, the Carbon Dino's brought the power of a storm down on the Granite High Farmers, 34-17, and the ending of almost two years of losses lead to a watershed of emotion for the players and the coaches.
"I sure feel a lot better today," said head coach Lane Herrick in a phone interview on Monday morning. "This will go a long way toward improving the confidence of the team for the rest of the season."
True, Granite is not a juggernaut. With a 1-5 record coming into the game, many thought this was a chance for that breakthrough win. But a win is a win, and now this puts Carbon in a position to win three games this season, something the program hasn't achieved for some time.
But this game was not what it seemed to be by looking at the final score.
The first half was a defensive battle with Granite getting the only score with a first quarter field goal. The zeros on the board look bleak for the Dinos.
But the second half woke up a Carbon scoring machine that couldn't be stopped anymore than a summer thunderstorm.
And curiously, through all the scoring in the second half by the Dinos, their best ball carrier for the game never got to go across the goal line.
Colton Howes, carrying the ball for the Dinos, amassed 128 yards on 17 carries, but never scored a point. However, his satisfaction has to come from the fact that he brought the ball to the point where others were able to carry it through.
Those others included JJ Blue who took the ball over the goal line twice in the second quarter with extra points added by Willy Woodruff to make the score 14-3.
Then there was Keith Barker who ran the ball back on a 75 yard kickoff return to make the score 20-3 to end the third quarter.
In the fourth period Brandon Wilson then threw the ball to Barker, this time acting as a receiver to score another six points.
Finally, Levi Branch ran in the final score of the game for the Dinos, and icing the cake for the first victory this year.
However, while all this offensive celebration was going on, the Carbon defense stopped the Farmer offense by holding them to a touchdown and extra point in each of the final two quarters of the game.
It was a satisfying victory for a very young team. Out of 65 players listed on Carbon's roster, senior players are about as thin as the glaze on a hot donut.
"We have so few seniors," said Herrick. "We generally only start two to three of them a game. This will get us going."
Those 13 seniors and their junior and sophomore counterparts don't have much time to celebrate, because on Friday Juan Diego, the scourge of the 2A ranks until this year when they jumped to the 3A division and joined Region 8, come to Price to face the Dinos.
"They are a very solid bunch," said Herrick of the Soaring Eagles.
Herrick knows that after Juan Diego they must face North Sanpete (2-0, 3-4) the next week and then Emery (0-2,0-7) on Oct. 19, a Wednesday night game to start the UEA break.
Could the state tournament now be in the future for Carbon?
Things would have to go right for the Dinos, but it is a definite possibility if they play well. Right now they are in fourth place and four teams from the region go to state. They are in the drivers seat as far as that fourth position goes, because both Granite and Emery have no wins.
Granite was the first team, in the regular season or preseason that Carbon played that had a losing record.
On Friday night the team has a chance to prove they are true drought busters.