A defensive performance like Logan put on Friday night will typically win a game.
Scoring 35 points — 28 by halftime — in addition to that is a good sign of growth for a team like the Grizzlies that has struggled with consistency this season.
Logan smothered Mountain Crest, not allowing much room to breathe throughout the full 48 minutes. By the end, the Grizzlies had allowed just one touchdown — a long pass on a broken play that started with a fumble — earning its second victory of the season, 35-6, in the Region 11 opener for both schools at Crimson Field.
Logan (2-3 overall, 1-0 region) was a complete team on Friday, possibly its first performance through five games that reached that level of cohesion.
“I love the way we played tonight,” Logan head coach Bart Bowen said. “We played physical, we had a complete game offensively, defense played lights out.”
Something that stood out on the night was the emergence of a second high-level receiver in Logan’s squad. At the beginning of the season, most of the attention was put on Jaylen Sargent and rightly so. He is a very talented receiver who has been a focal point of the offense. However, he certainly won’t have to do it alone if Gage Jenson can continue to show signs of his potential.
“Guys are getting more confident, we’re starting to figure out we’ve got two legit receivers out there,” Bowen said.
Jenson opened up the scoring in the first quarter with a 34-yard touchdown reception from quarterback Kody Kirk. He added another in the second quarter, this time from 26 yards out and also coming from Kirk.
Logan has had some success this season throwing the ball, but hasn’t found quite the same level of success running the ball. That was different in this game. Running back Matthew Mason was all over the field, contributing on both sides of the ball. Early on, he established the running game by breaking multiple 10-plus yard gains. He even made a few impactful catches from out of the backfield.
“Our line is starting to believe, if I just run my feet and be aggressive, good things will happen,” Bowen said.
There were even a handful of appearances of a wildcat formation with Jaelin Hoth handling the quarterback duties. This worked with some success, but looked promising with Hoth able to grab the Grizzlies’ final touchdown off a 10-yard run. And most importantly, it gives the defense another thing to worry about with the growing list of offensive weapons Logan possesses.
“We’ve been working on it the last few weeks, we didn’t feel like we really had it ready yet, but we liked what we saw this week and so we gave Hoth the ball and he runs that mesh really well,” Bowen said. “When you’ve got JJ (Sargent) in the backfield as a pitch option, and our line’s blocking and we’ve got two legit running backs, it’s hard to stop.”
The Grizzly defense was just as solid as the offense and really set the tone for what was to come on the other side of the ball. Early on, Mountain Crest (1-4, 0-1) struggled to gain anything on the ground and didn’t attempt to supplement this lack of explosiveness through the passing game. Logan was quick, direct and didn’t miss tackles. Just as much as it elevated physically, equally it did mentally on the defensive side, highlighted by Jacob Tegt’s 85-yard pick-six in the second quarter.
Even as the game progressed into the third quarter and Logan was up 35-0, Bowen was still screaming at his players to stay physical.
“We want the ball back, we want to go score, our defense wants to not let anything go down the field,” Bowen said. “Our defense is hungry, they’re playing hard and physical and they feed off that emotion, so when we’re yelling and screaming they play better.”
Although Logan has just two wins on the season, it continues to progress week-by-week. Friday was the first complete performance of the season, and Bowen is happy to see the improvements manifested into results on the field.
“We’ve improved a ton,” Bowen said. “The kids are taking coaching, they’re making new mistakes which we preach, if you’re making the same mistakes you’re not improving and our kids are getting better and better and we’re opening up the offense to do things we hadn’t been able to do in the last four weeks.”
GRIZZLIES 35, MUSTANGS 6
Friday at Logan
Logan 7 21 7 0 — 35
Mountain Crest 0 0 0 6 — 6
L — Gage Jenson pass from Kody Kirk (Noe Moreno kick), 0:37
L — Matthew Mason 4 run (Moreno kick), 9:18
L — Jacob Tegt 85 interception return (Moreno kick), 7:15
L — Jenson 26 pass from Kirk (Moreno kick), 0:54
L — Jaelin Hoth 10 run (Moreno kick), 10:14
MC — Emilio Veater 41 pass from Zeb Benson (kick failed), 3:14