Miners set for state football playoff actionOct 26, 2020 04:00PM ● By Josh McFadden
After sharing the Region 3 title, the Bingham football team hosted Granger in the first round of the Class 6A state tournament. (Photos by Pat McDonald)
By Josh McFadden | [email protected]ityjournals.com
Even in a season that has posed more challenges than many in recent years, the Bingham football team still did what it seems to always do: win a region title.
Though the season had some postponements and reshuffling of schedules due to COVID-19, Bingham compiled a 4-1 record in Region 3 and went 6-3 overall. The Miners tied East for the league crown, meaning they have no shared or outright won the region championship for the ninth consecutive season.
How consistently good has Bingham been over the past 17 seasons? Its three losses this year were the most the program has suffered during the regular season since 2003.
Bingham secured the No. 9 seed for the Class 6A state tournament. The Miners were set to host Granger on Oct. 23. A victory in that first-round matchup would advance Bingham to the second round where they would play at Pleasant Grove.
Bingham got off to a strange start to the season. Its first game was postponed because of the coronavirus. Following that, the team dropped consecutive games to Skyridge (35-7) and Corner Canyon (42-20). However, the Miners responded to those defeats with four straight wins, including a thrilling 29-28 overtime win over East on Sept. 25. This was East’s only league loss of the season. The Miners and Leopards were tied at 21-21 at the end of regulation. After East scored a touchdown and converted an extra point in overtime, Bingham had a shot to even things.
But the Miners went a step further.
Cael Wightman scored on a 10-yard touchdown run, but instead of going for the tie, head coach Dave Peck elected to go for the win. The strategy paid off, as Bingham converted on a two-point conversion, clinching the victory.
Though the Miners lost to Riverton the following week, they posted consecutive wins over Jordan (49-0) and Copper Hills (28-7) to wrap up the regular season.
As is usually the case with the Bingham football team, the rushing game played a big role in the team’s success. Saia Lomu paced the squad in rushing during the regular season with 689 yards and six touchdowns. Semisi Vi added 417 yards and a pair of scores on 69 carries. Quarterback Troy Mehn tallied 274 yards and four touchdowns on the ground to go along with 1,186 yards passing and eight touchdowns. His favorite target was Isaiah Glasker, who caught 39 balls for just under 600 yards and five touchdowns. Parker Gurr had 15 catches for 213 yards.
Defensively, Bingham had some ups and downs, but there were plenty strong individual performances. Kayden Davis had 49 tackles and three interceptions. Will Hamilton also picked off three passes. Vililianmi Po’uha registered 8.5 sacks and collected 48 tackles. Sam Sinoti led the Miners with 64 stops.
Bingham will look to improve on last year’s state tournament showing. At the 2019 tournament, the Miners fell to region rival East 20-16 in the quarterfinals. Bingham had defeated the Leopards 16-14 earlier that year.