Spanish Fork quarterback Kaden Holt threw for two touchdown pass and ran for two more to lead the Dons to a 26-14 victory over Payson on Senior Night.
The Lions, having lost four of their last five games coming into Thursday’s contest, drew first blood when Matthew Mason raced to the end zone for a 56-yard touchdown run less than five minutes into the game.
The touchdown run gave Payson momentum for the time being, but Spanish Fork responded by putting together a solid drive moving the ball deep into Payson territory. However, the drive came to an abrupt halt when Payson’s Clay Carson intercepted a Don pass at the 2-yard line giving the visiting Lions possession.
As the first half progressed, Payson’s grip on the game began to slip. The Lions committed multiple penalties in the second quarter and couldn’t convert on 3rd-and-long attempts.
The Spanish Fork offense finally found a spark behind the running of Tayson Reid. The hard-running sophomore broke off chunk yardage runs leading the Dons down the field resulting in a 17-yard touchdown catch by Elias Davidson from Holt.
Coming out of halftime, the Dons forced a Payson punt giving Spanish Fork the ball near midfield. It took the home team just three plays to find pay-dirt, as Holt burst through the middle for a 31-yard touchdown run. However, the receiver on the Dons two-point conversion pass feel short of the goal line leaving Spanish Fork with a just six-point lead.
The Lions, however, didn’t panic and responded on the following drive when Logan Wride connected with Mason in the flat and the senior running back burst down the right side before cutting across the field and diving into the endzone. A Zach Robbins PAT was good, giving Payson an edge.
A fourth-down stop led by Spanish Fork freshman defensive lineman Issac Reupena gave the Dons possession on downs. Moments later the Spanish Fork regained the lead when Holt connected with Cade Olsen for a 45-yard touchdown pass, giving the home team a 19-14 advantage.
After another fourth-down Don defensive stop, Holt capped the scoring for Spanish Fork barreling into the endzone from 1-yard out, clinching the victory.
Spanish Fork will wrap-up its season next week against Region 7 foe Mountain Ridge, while Payson travels to Provo for its season finale.