ST. GEORGE — Dixie kept their season alive with another blowout win in the playoffs, this time a 42-14 win against Stansbury in the quarterfinals of the Class 4A state football playoffs. The Flyers advance to the semifinals where they will play Sky View at the University of Utah next Friday.
Reggie Graff accounted for four of the touchdowns scored by the Flyers, three rushing and one passing touchdown, while the Dixie defense stepped up yet again to hold the Stansbury offense to only 14 points.
Everyone thought going into this game that it was going to be a shootout with two explosive offenses, but it turned out to be a one-sided game in favor of Dixie.
“They did a good job tonight,” head coach Blaine Monkres said of his defense. “They just keep getting better and better and guys are starting to play hard on that side of the ball.”
The defense helped out with a pick six after the Dixie offense scored twice to start the game, and the Flyers were rolling. Nolan Mahi also had a big time interception that had the Dixie bench going crazy.
“It’s an uphill battle,” Monkres said. “Anytime we can get 21 in the first quarter, I’m feeling pretty good about it, especially when they have zero.”
The Dixie offense has been explosive, both passing and running, but tonight the running game stood out. Both Monkres and senior Tyler Walden pointed out the offensive line for the success the running game has had.
“Huge shout-out to our o-line, our o-line is great this year,” Walden said. “Preston (Moores) has all of these holes he can hit, and they really stepped up today and this season for sure.”
Moore scored on a 9-yard run to cap off the opening possession of the game. Tyler Walden also added a receiving touchdown while playing offense, defense and special teams.
Dixie has kept the offense rolling. When there are some struggles with the passing game, Reggie Graff uses his feet to create opportunities. An extremely experienced receiving corps only adds to the offense, and when you add in Preston Moore as the leading rusher, the potency only increases.
“We’re going to be tough to stop,” Monkres said of his offense. “Reggie was a little off throwing the ball tonight, but you know our o-line has been our strength all year long. We’re getting everyone back, getting healthy on the o-line where we’ve got our five solid guys up there. That’s where our experience is and with those guys up front, if they’re going to give us the run, then we’re going to go ahead and run it.”
Monkres also pointed out Hunter Knighton and Walden, who play both ways for the Flyers. Their conditioning has only gotten better as the season has gone on, and they have both been big pieces for the Flyers this season.
With Sky View beating Mountain View 56-13, the No. 3 seeded Flyers will take on the No. 2 seeded Bobcats next Friday, with kickoff scheduled for 6 p.m. from the University of Utah.
“They’re a good football team, but anybody who gets this far has a pretty good football team,” Monkres said. “Hopefully, we’ll just get ready to play again and have a good opponent in Sky View.”
Walden said that they will watch a lot of film in the coming week and play their hardest as a team.
After the game, Monkres spoke on the idea of possibly having three teams in the semifinals from Region 9. Now we know that there will only be two.
“I think that’s sweet,” Monkres said. “I’m happy for those guys, I like to make sure Region 9 is represented well. We think we’ve got a pretty good region down here, and if we get three teams in, obviously that’s fact.”
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