(Editor's note: Story contributions by WyoPreps.com)
LARAMIE, Wyo. - Dean Shaw accounted for three touchdowns and the Star Valley Braves blew out the Powell Panthers, 49-13, to win another 3A football state title Friday in Laramie.
Shaw threw a touchdown passes, ran for another and caught one all in the first half. He threw a 29-yard TD pass to Chase Merrell, ran for a 49-yard score, and caught a 22-yard pass from Brant Nelson.
Chase Merrell added two touchdown catches of 29 yards and 49 yards. The Braves scored on their first six possessions in the game.
Powell had dedicated its season to quarterback Ethan Asher who was nearly killed when the truck he was driving rolled on the first day of school in August. Doctors weren't sure whether Asher would live, let alone speak or walk again. After spending weeks in a Billings, Mont., hospital, he was transferred to a Denver medical center where he continues to make progress. Asher is now able to talk and use limited motor skills.
The Denver facility allowed him a day trip to Laramie on Friday where he accompanied his Panthers to mid-field for the coin toss and watched them play for the championship.
Star Valley (12-0) won its 13th football state championship in school history. The Braves go back-to-back in Class 3A and win their fourth football crown in the last five seasons.
Shaw hooked up with Merrell on a 29-yard pass for a 7-0 Star Valley lead. Shaw's TD run made it 14-0 late in the first quarter. He completed the offensive hat trick by catching a 22-yard pass from Brant Nelson. After a 2-point conversion pass, the score was 22-0.
The Braves added a one-yard David Castillo touchdown run and Merrell hauled a 49-yard pass from Nelson in the second quarter. It was 35-0 at halftime.
Hazen Erickson made a one-handed grab over the middle and turned it into a 77-yard touchdown on the first drive of the third quarter. RJ Cazier scored on a five-yard late in the fourth quarter that capped Star Valley's scoring.
Toran Graham accounted for the first score of the game for the Panthers. A 1-yard TD run in the 3rd quarter. Late in fourth-quarter, Landon Lengfelder threw a 36-yard TD pass to Jesse Trotter.
The Braves racked up 451 yards of total offense. Shaw finished the game with 99 rushing yards, 43 receiving yards, and 46 passing yards and three total TDs. Nelson finished the game 9-11 for 172 passing yards and three TDs. Cazier added 117 rushing yards and one TD. Merrell finished with six receptions for 85-yards and two scores.
Powell (7-5) was held to 155 yards of offense. Brody Karhu finished the game with 81 rushing yards. Lengfelder was 3-6 for 57 yards passing and the one TD. Adrian Geller had 13 total tackles for the Panther on defense.
In the day's opening game, Kimball Madsen ran for 244 yards and three touchdowns to lead Mountain View to a 24-14 victory over Buffalo for the Class 2A State Championship.
Madsen scored on runs of 58, 3, and 60 yards in the first half, as the Buffaloes jumped out to a 21-0 lead.
Mountain View (11-0) completed their undefeated season and got revenge for a loss to the Bison in last year’s championship game. The Buffaloes won their sixth state football title in school history and third in the last six seasons.
Buffalo rallied with two touchdowns in the second half but fell short in their attempt to repeat.
Neither team scored in the first quarter. Madsen then ran 58 yards on the third play of the second quarter for a 7-0 Buffaloes lead.
A fumble by Buffalo on the next play from scrimmage gave Mountain View the ball at the Bison 7-yard line. Two plays later, Madsen scored from three yards out and made it 14-0.
Buffalo drove to the Mountain View 14-yard line, but a fumble was recovered by the Buffaloes.
After a 30-yard pass from Braeden Walk to Ashton Schofield on third down and 25, Madsen scored again. This time he took it 60-yards breaking tackles and running over defenders along the way. It was 21-0 at halftime.
Buffalo’s Rowen Ruby got the Bison on the board with a 91-yard kick-off return for a touchdown that opened the second half.
Mountain View responded with a field goal by Teancum Piekkola from 29-yards away and a 24-7 lead.
An interception led to Buffalo’s only other touchdown. Dallas Lopez picked off Walk at the Bison 19-yard line and returned it 39-yards to the Mountain View 42. Ruby capped the ensuing drive with a 20-yard TD run. After an unsuccessful onside kick, the Buffaloes were forced to punt. Buffalo got one first down, but the drive stalled and Mountain View ran out the clock.
The Buffaloes finished with 441 yards of total offense. Walk was 9-20 for 132 yards and the two interceptions. Briggin Bluemel led the Mountain View defense with 12 tackles, including two for a loss and two pass breakups.
Buffalo (10-1) had 225 yards on offense. Ruby ran for 108 yards and a touchdown. Mason Moon was 8-18 for 85 yards passing. Hyrum Hatch led the Bison defense with 17 tackles and 10 of them were solo stops. He had a tackle for loss and recovered a fumble.