By: Jessica Whalen [email protected]
Entering the playoffs with the No. 4 seed, the Wolverines football club team knocked off each of its opponents on their way to a championship.
It was the fourth playoff game in four seasons for UVU in the Utah Tackle Football League, finishing off the year with its second UTFL championship, wining 20-6 against Darkness.
You can call it whatever you want—inconceivable, shocking or stunning—yet, you’d better believe the Wolverines are two-time champs.
“We came in fourth out of eight playoff teams, but we had the tougher teams in our path,” team captain and four-year veteran Jordan Gleason said.
UVU beat the Iron Wolves during the final week of regular season games, which was a huge confidence boost for the Wolverines going into a first round rematch with them.
The Iron Wolves were the returning champions and had a dangerous offense. UVU was able to stop them with an electrifying defensive performance and won, 14-7.
Up next the Wolverines were to face the No. 1 ranked team, who beat them in the regular season by seven. Yet, UVU was able to stop the Eagles this time, winning 20-13 to advance to the championship.
“Despite that loss we were confident,” Gleason said. “We felt that we should have beaten them the first time.”
The Wolverines began the season in September with high expectations to advance to the championship for a third time after making it to the semifinals and championship the last two seasons respectively, coming up with losses both times.
To qualify for the finals this year the Wolverines had to knock off the back-to-back champion Iron Wolves, and defeat the best regular season UTFL team in the Eagles.
“This win meant quite a bit more considering that the league has so many more teams and is much more talented than it was when we won before.” Gleason said.
There were eight players on this season’s roster of 25 that played on UVU’s first championship team
“The key to our success was everybody did their job all season, nobody played selfish football,” Gleason said. “We had some great players and when we finally gelled together we felt unstoppable.”
The Wolverines began the season with a shutout against Darkness, 18-0. Darkness was on a hot streak entering the championship showdown, winning its last few games, but this didn’t frighten UVU.
The Wolverines were confident going into the championship against Darkness knowing the upset they caused in the season opener.
UVU dominated the championship game as they did against Darkness in the season opener. The only scoring opportunity for Darkness came from a fumble, which led them to their lone touchdown.
The offensive player of the game was UVU’s Matt Roberts after he recorded 87 receiving and scored two touchdowns. The defensive player of the game went to UVU’s Alan Sheffer for his six tackles and one sack.
Wolverines that led the UTFL in their respective statistical categories during the season include quarterback Kyler Frampton with 936 passing yards, Roberts with 452 receiving yards, Chase Orwin with 411 rushing yards and Sheffer with 30 tackles,
Jake Jensen was second in sacks with three, James Anderson hauled in the second-most interceptions (three) and only one player had more touchdowns than Orwin’s seven.
Orwin’s rushing total broke the UTFL individual record for one season, as did Sheffer’s 30 tackles.
UTFL spring league registration has opened. The deadline to signup is Feb. 8 and all players must be registered by Feb. 15. The spring season begins Feb. 22 and ends April 26. The season will consist of five regular season games and the eight best teams advance to the three-round playoffs.
Games take place each Saturday morning or afternoon. Visit www.hitsomeone.com for more information.