PROVO, Utah – The No.19 Provo Bulldogs forced several turnovers and turned them into points and a win over the Cedar Valley Aviators.
The Bulldogs managed to score a touchdown in their first practice of the game to take a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter. Cedar Valley made it into the red zone but missed a field goal attempt.
Provo came off for a very long run and as the running back reached the five-yard line, Cedar Valley’s Tanner Evans pulled the ball out and took it the other way around.
Early in the second quarter, Lucas Peck caught a long ball and brought it to the four-yard line. The Aviators scored after DL So’i Saaga ran into a one-yard TD to tie the score at seven with just over 11 minutes left in the first half.
On Provo’s score, Feitagai Lesa ran into the touchdown to give the Bulldogs a 13-7 lead with 9:17 left in the first half. Shortly after Cedar Valley’s next practice, quarterback Payton Weber suffered a serious injury and did not return to play as he was retired. Easton Schank took over at quarterback.
The Aviators reacted to adversity losing their starting quarterback to Joe Lomu on a touchdown and the game was tied at 13 with 4:21 remaining until halftime. Provo responded with Jace Welsch connecting with Tomasi Hifo for a 57-yard touchdown to give the Bulldogs a 20-13 lead with 3:06 left in halftime.
On third and on goal, Welsch found Rockwell Magleby for a five-yard touchdown and Provo’s lead was 27-13 with 37 seconds left in the first half.
The Aviators opened the second half with impressive practice. Cedar Valley walked down midfield and finished the race with a Lomu touchdown to reduce Provo’s lead to 27-20.
After the touchdown, the Aviators stepped up their defense and forced a fumble from Provo.
Unfortunately for Cedar Valley and luckily for Provo, the Bulldogs returned the favor and forced a fumble on the next play of the Aviators’ offense.
The Bulldogs took advantage of the second chance. Welsch de Provo took a quarterback stealthily across the goal line and into the end zone. The score brought Provo’s lead to 34-20.
Provo’s defense followed the score by forcing a three-and-out. The Bulldogs received the ball and a short court, but we couldn’t take advantage of the opportunity.
However, Cedar Valley returned the ball to Provo when Magleby snatched the ball away for an impressive interception. Once again, the Bulldogs failed to turn the turnover into points and the Aviators forced a punt from Provo.
Cedar Valley’s offense failed to start and Provo recovered the ball.
The Bulldogs dodged a turnaround, a near interception from the Aviators, and scored their second touchdown of the half. Lesa directed the ball into the end zone to give the Bulldogs a three-point advantage, 41-20.
In the last 90 seconds of play, Provo intercepted Cedar Valley to seal his victory.
With the result, Provo improved to a 3-0 record this season and Cedar Valley fell to 1-2.
The Bulldogs’ next game is against the Viewmont Vikings on Friday, September 3 at 7 p.m. MDT.
The Aviators’ next game will be against the Payson Lions on Friday, September 3 at 7 p.m. (MDT).