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A special night for the Miners

Adia Waldburger, of the Record staff
The Miners hold hands before the start of Friday's football game against Logan.
20060829__0Sports

Friday afternoon, Park City senior Lucas Tucker had a little talk with his father before that night’s football game against 3A defending state champion Logan High School. They talked about how important it was for his father to be there with him and how Tucker would have a special game.

That night, Tucker went out and made the winning catch, knocking off the No. 1 team — a team previously undefeated in 11 games — and recording his first ever-reception in a high school game.

Tucker said his father saw the whole thing from heaven.

In a game that was already wracked with emotional highs, Tucker had the most on his mind. His father, Alan, passed away from pancreatic cancer just three weeks ago, and his memorial service came just days before the big game.

"It was very emotional," Tucker said.

Tucker’s catch was part of a heart-stopping two-point conversion play in overtime. The rarely used play was part of a big time call that Park City head coach Brandon Matich made after the Logan Grizzlies made the first touchdown in overtime, forcing the Miners to take the two-point risk in order to seal a 36-35 victory after a five-yard rushing touchdown by Michael Tew.

In fact, the entire game was filled with amazing plays and a stunning Miners’ attack on the state’s best team. Although the Grizzlies struck first in the second quarter with a pass from quarterback Chaz Housley to Jesse Yarger to go up 7-0, the Miners answered back in a big way.

Despite being hampered by a back injury suffered in last week’s game, Park City running back Michael Tew made long runs of 58, 35 and 28 yards in the second quarter, reminding the Grizzlies defense that he will be a force to be reckoned with in 3A competition this year.

"If you look at his eyes in the pregame, you know he’s going to get the job done and he just gives you confidence," Matich said.

In the meantime, the Park City defense also went to work, quieting Logan’s star running back Josh Flores in the first half and forcing an injured Housley to put the ball in the air, where he clearly struggled. The Grizzlies’ passing attack was further slowed by Park City cornerback Bobby Thorne, who led the defense in tackles with 11 on the night.

"This year we did what we needed to do," said Thorne, comparing the game to last year’s matchup, where Logan beat the Miners decisively.

Colton Nichter and Nick Vought also came up big for the Miners, both making fumble recoveries.

The Miners opened up the second half with another touchdown from Tew from the one-yard line to put the Miners up 28-7. Eventually though, Logan reminded Park City why they were ranked No.1 and made three touchdowns on the legs of Housley and Flores to tie up the game at 28-28 and send it into overtime.

Flores struck first with an 11-yard score in overtime and a perfect point-after by Logan’s Josh Thompson.

Then Tew made his final touchdown of the night, capping off another 100-yard-plus game with 160 total rushing yards on the night. Matich made the call for ers to roll left and pass to the waiting Tucker in the endzone a play that Logan seemed more than prepared to defend.

"I had this feeling that we knew we were going to get it," Byers said.

Maybe that feeling was what Logan hadn’t counted on — a special father-son bond that not even cancer or death could break apart. Maybe it was a guardian angel named Alan Tucker that gave the Miners and gave his son the biggest night of his life and the Miners one of their biggest wins in school history.

"It was the best moment of my career," Tucker said. "So far "

The 2-0 Miners will host Richfield on Friday at 7 p.m. at Dozier Field.

North Summit beat South Sevier 27-7 to stay undefeated thus far this year. The Braves’ Nathaniel Richins once again had a big night finishing with 11 carries for 128 yards and two touchdowns. Drew Robinson also contributed with 77 yards, three receptions and a touchdown. Bryer Trussell made a late-game interception to silence South Sevier for good.

Next game: North Summit at Manti at 7 p.m. on Sept. 1.

South Summit lost to Duchesne 20-6. The Wildcats are now 1-1 on the season.

Next game: Gunnison at South Summit at 7 p.m. on Sept. 1.


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