It appeared Stansbury had sliced Mountain Crest’s lead to 17-14 early in the fourth quarter when Silas Young ran 45 yards for a touchdown.
“I let up a bit because I was a step or two across the goal line, and the ball had crossed the plane,” Young said.
Officials saw it differently and ruled that Young was stripped of the ball by a defender just before he crossed the goal line. The ball rolled out of the back of the end zone for a touchback.
Mountain Crest held on to win the game 17-7 Friday night at Stansbury in a rematch of last year’s Class 4A semifinal.
The visitors kicked a field goal in the first quarter to take a 3-0 advantage.
The Stallions (2-2) then drove 76 yards and burned about 8 minutes off the clock to take a 7-3 lead midway through the second quarter. Austin Woodhouse tossed a 6-yard pass to Kaeden Kincaid for the score, and the PAT was added by Kolton Loertscher.
The Mustangs (2-2) answered with a long scoring drive of their own with Hunter Schroder scoring from 1 yard out to give the visitors a 10-7 lead at halftime.
Mountain Crest widened the gap to 17-7 to start the second half with a 95-yard kickoff return by Kordell Welch.
Defense ruled the rest of the way with neither team able to put points on the board after the kick return.
“Our defense played lights out in the second half,” said Stansbury coach Clint Christiansen. “The bottom line is that we were the better team in the second half. We beat them in every category up and down the field. I’m happy with our performance. I’m not down a bit.”
However, Christiansen was not happy with the officiating, especially after Young’s apparent touchdown was taken away.
“Silas crossed the goal line and was two yards in the end zone and the guy (official) is back on the 25-yard line and has no idea what is going on,” Christiansen said. “If it were a region game that would be a big deal.”
The coach said he was frustrated with a few other calls.
The Stallions drove inside the Mustang 20-yard line early in the fourth quarter, but the play was nullified by a holding call.
“It’s frustrating when the officials influence the outcome of a game. It’s not about our losing, it’s about letting the kids decide the outcome one way or another,” Christiansen said.
“Overall, I thought it was an outstanding game. They’re a good team, well-coached. I loved the way our kids rallied. They are going to fight you for 48 minutes up or down. That’s our culture here at Stansbury,” the coach said.
Young rushed for 191 yards on 31 carries.
“We just have to move on now. Our defense played really well, and there were some questionable calls against our offense,” Young said.
He is optimistic about region play, which starts on Friday against Tooele.
“Our team is just as good as last year’s if not better,” he said.
The Stallions came through with a pair of interceptions to thwart Mountain Crest drives.
Kooper Roundy picked off a pass at midfield in the first quarter which was followed by the Stallions’ touchdown drive.
Mountain Crest was in prime position to add to its lead in the third quarter after the Stallions fumbled the ball at their own 10.
Stansbury’s defense prevailed when linebacker Jet Richins batted a pass into the air and it was picked off by defensive tackle Calvin “Jebus” Mead.
Richins tallied 10 tackles in the game including four solo tackles. Jake Spaulding finished with nine tackles, Payton Didericksen seven and Connor Kincaid and Jordon Snow with five each.