by Ryan Mosser
It was an unbelievable sight at the University of Utah’s Rice-Eccles Stadium on Saturday night as the two premiere programs in the state, Bingham and Alta, got together for a major game. Known as the “Black and Blue Bowl,” there was no question why it was named that as the stands were filled with black and blue shirts, while the players on the field did their best to ensure their opponents would look the same. The teams took the field and the number one team in the nation (Bingham) intimidated the opposition by doing a Polynesian War Dance called the Haka. The tone was set for the evening.
After the coin toss, it was time for football and it promised to be a great contest. The first few possessions were a power struggle, but toward the end of the quarter, nationally known Bingham running back Harvey Langi punched in an 8-yard touchdown run, followed by an unorthodox two point conversion. At the end of the first quarter it was 8-0 Bingham.
The second quarter was more successful offensively for Alta as Boston Handley connected with Mitch Casey on an unbelievable 36-yard touchdown pass. The two point conversion that ensued was no good, and the score was 8-6 Bingham. Bingham responded well as running back Harvey Langi once again carried the load, capping off a scoring drive with a 4-yard touchdown run. After the PAT, the score was 15-6 Bingham at the half.
The third quarter was more of the same back and forth as Bingham scored on a 34-yard touchdown pass from Stefan Cantwell to Josh Smith, making the score 22-6. Alta surged back and breathed life into their chances when Boston Handley and Mitch Casey hooked up again on a 30-yard pass that brought the Hawks back to within ten with a score of 22-12. The familiar name of Harvey Langi once again showed up in the third with a 45-yard touchdown scamper that basically started the flood gates opening for Bingham. The score was 28-12, and the Miners were never going to look back as the third quarter came to a close.
When the fourth quarter began, Bingham was looking to put the finishing touches on a great night. Alta still had fight in them, however, as they struck first in the quarter on a 20 yard touchdown pass from Boston Handley to Ammon Barker. After a failed two point conversion the score was now 28-18. What now felt like a “World Famous” Harvey Langi, stamped his final seal on the game of a lifetime when he broke a 50-yard touchdown run ending all of Alta’s hopes. The score was now 35-18, and the first set of downs after the ensuing kickoff was ended by a pick six from Bingham’s Jared Afalava.
With the score now being 42-18 it was all over but the shouting. The Miners would score an additional time on a 2-yard run by Inoke Taufalele. It was 49-18 and Alta put a late score in on a Jovan London run with some spectacular moves. After the two point conversion the final score was 49-26.
Immediately following the conclusion of the game Air Force TSgt. Ryan Vanhook presented Harvey Langi with the MVP medal and trophy before handing over the Great American Rivalry Series Championship trophy to the Bingham Miners. It was truly a special night in Salt Lake City.
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- Bingham vs. Alta – 2010