Prep football: Evans quickly emerges as force for Pleasant Grove

Prep football • Evans transferred to Pleasant Grove after his junior year.
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Jeremiah Evans marveled at the scene, his voice still severely hoarse fresh off an upset of a previously undefeated team. The senior quarterback at Pleasant Grove just had steered the Vikings past Davis on the road.

Once the two sides finished the congratulatory postgame line, the Pleasant Grove student section paced the sideline, stalking Evans, who immediately was engulfed by the swarm of friends.

He stayed out on the field and soaked it in as long as he could, thanking everyone for coming to watch his team play while simultaneously ensuring the fans that Pleasant Grove wasn't done toppling talented teams.

The whirlwind of having to move and relocate schools and teammates and teams suddenly was less of a burden.

Evans transferred from American Fork following his junior year — a decision the Viking quarterback dreaded at the time.

"He's gained the trust of his teammates being a move-in, and everything we've asked him to do," Pleasant Grove coach Les Hamilton said, "he's done it."

Evans, a strong-armed 6-foot-1, 210-pound quarterback, has thrown for 2,348 yards along with 15 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in 11 games. Evans said he hasn't received any official scholarship offers yet, quickly adding, "I hope to change that."

The system he's learned in a short time is designed to be explosive in different facets, not just showcase Evans' arm.

Running back TJ Wind has rushed for 1,270 yards and 20 touchdowns. Wideout Spencer Romney is considered one of the most dangerous threats in the state, hauling in 827 yards receiving and six touchdowns.

"It takes a lot of pressure off everyone when you don't have to be one-dimensional," Evans said. "That's why we're such a dangerous team."

That, and the imposing look of No. 7 in the shotgun.

Wind attributes the success to Evans' cordial attitude and approach. The senior team co-captain said when Evans isn't going through drills in practice on the field, he's studying film in his spare time.

"He doesn't have bad reps," Wind said. "And if he has a bad rep, he gets another to make sure he gets it right. It's perfection with Jeremiah. It's the little things that count with him."

It also helps having Hamilton, who led Alta to back-to-back Class 5A titles with Alta in 2007 and 2008, at the helm.

"All I've learned is he's an intense coach, he knows what he's doing and that I better listen," Evans said. "Obviously it's paying off. He deserves another title."

The first-year Viking quarterback also understands the big stage.

He led Pleasant Grove to a 21-17 win over defending 4A state champion Timpview on the road Aug. 30 and helped slip by Lehi, Lone Peak, American Fork, Herriman and Davis.

"He's led us to comeback victory four times this year," Hamilton said.

The magic could be called upon once again Friday night. The Vikings travel to Sandy to take on the defending 5A state champion Jordan Beetdiggers and star Austin Kafentzis.

"I know we're a dangerous team," Evans said, "and I know we can compete with anybody."

Twitter: @chriskamrani —

Playoff schedule

Class 5A

Friday's quarterfinals

3 p.m. • Alta at Lone Peak

4 p.m. • Pleasant Grove at Jordan

5 p.m. • Brighton at Herriman

5 p.m. • Riverton at Bingham

Class 4A

Friday's quarterfinals

3 p.m. • Olympus at Logan

3:30 p.m. • Corner Canyon at East

3:30 p.m. • Sky View at Timpview

4 p.m. • Salem Hills at Woods Cross

Class 3AA

Friday's quarterfinals

4 p.m. • Snow Canyon at Juan Diego

5 p.m. • Cedar City at Dixie

5 p.m. • Desert Hills at Stansbury

5 p.m. • Hurricane at Pine View

Class 3A

Friday's semifinal

at Southern Utah University

4 p.m. • Juab vs. Judge

Saturday's semifinal

at Southern Utah University

4 p.m. • Morgan vs. Manti

Class 2A

Saturday's semifinals

at Southern Utah University

11 a.m. • Grand County vs. North Summit

1:30 p.m. • South Summit vs. Beaver

Class 1A Friday's semifinals

at Southern Utah University

11 a.m. • Diamond Ranch vs. Duchesne

1:30 p.m. • Rich vs. Kanab