Regular-season high school football games don’t get much bigger — or evenly matched — than Friday night’s 5A SIC Pod A championship contest.
But when the stakes were highest, Capital quarterback Drew Korf was at his best.
In fact, he was perfect.
Korf ran for two touchdowns, threw for two more and completed all nine of his second-half passes, racking up 325 total yards as Capital edged Mountain View 27-22 at Dona Larsen Park.
The Eagles (8-1, 5-0 Pod A) claim the pod title, a first-round playoff bye and the right to host a state quarterfinal in two weeks.
“We’ve got a tight-knit group,” Korf said. “Our coaches had a great game plan, play calling was money, and guys stepped up and made big plays. We came together for all four quarters and got it done.”
With the loss, Mountain View (7-2, 4-1) hosts Rigby (4-5) in the first round of the 5A state playoffs next week.
Korf finished 21-of-28 for 285 yards through the air, tossing a 74-yard touchdown pass to Harrison Ashby and the go-ahead score to Jessie Healy early in the fourth quarter.
That proved to be just enough for the Capital defense, which denied Mountain View on fourth-and-five from the 9 with less than 5 minutes remaining. Overall, the Eagles held the Mavericks to 277 total yards — 122 fewer than their season average.
“These are two good football teams,” Capital coach Todd Simis said. “We knew coming in it was going to take superior focus and toughness and, man, we showed toughness. Our defense played great, too, but mental toughness won this game.”
Defense dominated early, with the teams combining for nine first-half punts and two turnovers. Mountain View broke the stalemate late in the opening quarter, with senior quarterback Tucker Rovig firing a strike to senior receiver Keenan Pattwell for a 41-yard catch-and-run. A successful 2-point conversion made it 8-0.
Capital got on the board midway through the second quarter, taking advantage of a short field set up by Alex Lindsey’s punt return. Korf punched it in from the 4 to make it 8-7.
On the next Capital possession, Korf launched a pass deep down the right sideline. Ashby out-leaped a defender to make the grab, kept his balance and raced to the end zone for a 14-8 Capital lead, which held until halftime.
The second half got off to an ominous start for Capital, when Mountain View’s Daniel Boots scooped up a fumble and rumbled 54 yards to put the Mavericks back on top, 16-14.
Korf and Rovig then traded clutch scoring drives, with both quarterbacks scoring on short TD runs. Mountain View held a 22-21 lead through three quarters, setting up a drama-filled fourth.
With the pressure building and the clock quickly melting away, Korf delivered. He twice found tight end Cameron Godeny for big gains before firing a perfect strike to Healy, who high-stepped past a defender for the go-ahead, 35-yard touchdown.
“Drew’s a great player,” Simis said. “He always comes through for us in the biggest games, and tonight was no different. He was outstanding.”
Rovig drove the Mavericks deep into Capital territory, but a reverse pass on fourth-and-five came up empty. Korf and the Eagles were able to kill the clock from there, in part because Mountain View only had one timeout remaining.
“Close games like this usually come down to little things,” Mountain View coach Judd Benedick said. “We made a few mistakes and undisciplined plays, and against a great team like Capital, it costs you.”
Caden Hansen ran for 94 yards and Rovig threw for 125 to lead Mountain View (7-2, 4-1). The Mavericks will begin state tournament play next weekend, hosting either Rigby, Bonneville or Hillcrest.
“You never want to lose the last game of the regular season, but all of our goals are still in front of us,” Benedick said. “We want to stay together as a team for as long as we can, and we know we get at least one more week.”
- 1. Capital (8-1)
- 2. Mountain View (7-2)
- 3. Meridian (4-5)
Pod B (seeds not final)
- Eagle (8-0)
- Rocky Mountain (7-2)
- Borah (5-3)
- 1. Bishop Kelly (9-0)
- 2. Skyview (6-3)
- 3. Emmett (7-2)
- 4. Middleton (6-3)
- 1. Fruitland (6-2)
- 2. Weiser (4-4)
- 3. Homedale (5-3)
- 1. New Plymouth (6-2)
- 2. McCall-Donnelly (7-1)
- 3. Melba (5-3)
- 4. Nampa Christian (4-4)