While both offenses shook off early-season cobwebs, the Farmington defense stepped up and made the plays necessary Friday to leave Woodbury's Royal Stadium with a season-opening 22-20 victory.
Senior linebacker Brock Mogensen and a host of teammates swarmed Woodbury quarterback Ryan Christensen for a safety early in the second quarter, providing two points that ended up being the difference.
"Defense is the strength of this team. We're going to slow it down with the run game and protect the defense, and they made the plays tonight," Farmington coach Adam Fischer said.
After the safety, the Tigers got the ball back with a 9-7 lead. Three plays later junior quarterback Alijah Moe, making his first career start, raced 28 yards for a touchdown to put the Tigers in front 15-7.
The Farmington defense settled in after that, holding the Woodbury offense to minus-13 yards on its next four possessions. The Royals ended the drought in the third quarter with a five-play, 76-yard drive that ended with Christensen hooking up with Zach Ames for a 53-yard touchdown strike.
The next Woodbury possession ended when the Tigers' Adam Weed intercepted a pass and returned it to the Woodbury 32-yard line. On the next play, Weed caught a pass from Moe in stride for a 32-yard touchdown that made it 22-13.
Moe completed his first two career passes to give the Tigers an early lead. He and Weed connected on a 41-yard pass on the Tigers' second play from scrimmage. On the next play Moe tossed a 10-yard pass to an open Mogensen to make it 7-0.
Drew Pearson scored on two short touchdown runs for Woodbury, the second bringing the Royals to within two points with 5:39 left in the game.
Nick Saviskik sealed the game with an interception in the final minute after the Royals had driven to the Farmington 38.