The Sumner Spartans football team's proverbial mid-term exam ended up being nothing more than a breeze against the Franklin Pierce Cardinals.
Both teams came into the game undefeated but Sumner (5-0 overall) was the only team that walked away with a perfect record courtesy of a 28-6 win against Franklin Pierce (4-1) in an SPSL 2A matchup on Friday night in Parkland.
Sumner forced Franklin Pierce to punt five times and picked off Franklin Pierce quarterback Daniel Wheelock twice in the first half. Sumner sophomore reserve defensive back Josh Riley made the play of the game intercepting a Wheelock pass before returning it 56 yards for a touchdown giving Sumner a 14-0 lead with 2:51 left in the first quarter. Sumner head coach Keith Ross said that play set the tone for the entire game.
"That is what Josh Riley is all about. Whenever he gets a chance he seems to make good on it," Ross said. "That was a huge play for us. Any time you can score on defense and get the momentum, it's a big play."
Sumner middle linebacker Austin Striplin said he knew Riley had what it took to shine on the grand stage.
"Josh Riley is a play-maker," Striplin said. "He really showed what he could do today."
The Spartans scored all four of its touchdowns in the first half. Sumner running backs Brandon Tuilaepa and DeJon Lynch each had a rushing touchdown and Austin Gregg hauled in a 47-yard touchdown pass from Chase Torgison to extend Sumner's lead to 28-0 just before halftime. Torgison's strike to Gregg was set up by Sumner cornerback Jace Johnson's one handed interception late in the second quarter.
For a full story on the game, check out the sports section in the Oct. 9 edition.