Mountain View stuns Eagle

Mavs score 28 straight points to rebound from early 14-0 deficit.

rroberts@idahostatesman.comOctober 19, 2013 

EAGLE — Friday, Oct. 18, 2013, will go down as pretty much a perfect day for Mountain View senior Josh Buss.

Before the Mavericks began pre-game preparations, coach Judd Benedick called Buss into his office to give him some good news.

The 6-foot-3, 195-pound running back received an offer to play football for the University of Idaho.

Buss then went out and torched the Eagle defense for 226 yards and two touchdowns in a 28-21 win at Thunder Stadium that moved the Mavericks into third place in the 5A Southern Idaho Conference standings.

“I tried not to think about (the offer) too much,” Buss said. “The way I look at it is I am still in high school. I need to play for my team and focus on my team and then worry about all that after the season is over. I’ve only got maybe a month more of high school football left.”

Buss leads the 5A SIC in rushing with more than 1,400 yards and 18 touchdowns. His speed, strength and deceptiveness have also landed him an offer from Weber State, he said.

But all that wasn’t of much concern to Buss.

Friday’s win means the Mavericks (5-2) are in good position to advance to the postseason with two games remaining in the regular season.

“This was a big win for us. We needed this one,” Buss said. “Last year we were 6-3 and it didn’t cut it. This year we don’t want to have to face that problem.”

It wasn’t looking good for the Mavericks after two quarters.

Eagle senior Nick Wheeler scored a pair of touchdowns — the second on an 80-yard run — to put the Mustangs (5-2) up 14-0 with 4 minutes, 53 seconds remaining in the second quarter.

Mountain View avoided a first-half shutout with a 28-yard field goal by senior Isaac Dodd with 1:53 to go in the second quarter.

“We told the kids we didn’t really recognize them at half time,” Benedick said. “We came out so flat and they all kind of had this dazed look in their eyes like they were stunned.”

The Mavericks came to life in the second half, pulling within 14-13 at the end of the third and eventually taking the lead on quarterback Kai Turner’s 37-yard touchdown run with 4:18 left in the game.

“Up to that point we had just kind of had to scrape and claw for everything,” Benedick said. “All of the sudden it opened up and I had an angle where I could see it and I could tell that Kai was going to be gone. For the first time the whole game, I took a deep breath and thought, ‘Wow, we might survive this one.’”

Mountain View cornerback Beau White got the go-ahead drive going with his conference-leading sixth interception.

If not for a Wheeler reception for a touchdown as time expired, the Mavericks’ defense would have played a near-flawless second half.

“Eagle’s a great ball club. It was a tough, competitive game,” Turner said. “But we played inspired tonight, that’s for sure, and we came out with a ‘W.’”

Rachel Roberts: 377-6422, Twitter: @IDS_VarsityX

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