Western Slope Football Playoffs First Round Recap

Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 12:17 AM MST
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - The first games of the state high school football playoffs wrapped up over the weekend. Here’s a quick look at how teams from the Western Slope faired, as well as a preview of their upcoming matchups

Class 4A

#9 Fruita Monument Wildcats Defeats #24 Grand Junction Central Warriors 35-12

The Fruita Monument Wildcats and Central Warriors opened their season postseason facing off against each other, just like how they opened their regular seasons. The Wildcats won that matchup in August 14-7.

The Wildcats seemed in control early after a big run by Senior Corbin Rowell at the start of the second half put Fruita up 12-0.

Central received a big spark on the ensuing kickoff when Senior Receiver Jaxon Gohn had a huge return putting his team in great field position. The Warriors would cap off the drive with Quarterback Devin Hickey connecting with Gohn in the endzone. However the Wildcats would block the ensuing point after attempt making the score 12-6.

Fruita made it back into the red zone as the clock was running down in the first half. The Wildcats dialed up some trickery to get the ball in the endzone, first pitching the ball, then handing it off again on a reverse end-around to Senior Wide Receiver Ryan Antonucci. Antonucci first pulled up like he was going to throw the ball before tucking it in and running into the endzone for the touchdown. After that the Cats were in complete control and would cruise in the second half to a 35-12 victory.

The Wildcats will move on to take on the #8 seed Vista Ridge

#5 Montrose Red Hawks vs #12 Golden Demons

Looking elsewhere in the Class 4A bracket, the #5 Montrose Red Hawks earned a first-round bye but now know their opponent in the second round. They’ll be taking on the #12 Golden Demons at home.

The Demons came to the Western Slope twice during the regular season. The demons defeated the Grand Junction Tigers to close out their regular season, winning that matchup 27-7. But earlier in the season they suffered a one-point loss to the Palisade Bulldogs, losing that game 36-35.

Class 3A

#13 Palisade Bulldogs vs #4 Northridge Grizzlies

Speaking of the Palisade Bulldogs they’ve got their first playoff game, due to Class 3A starting the postseason one week later. They keep their playoff streak alive and will be taking on the #4 seed Northridge Grizzlies in Greeley Saturday at 1:00 p.m.

Class 2A

#1 Delta Panthers defeat #16 Berthoud Spartans 42-0

The #1 seed Delta Panthers welcomed the 6-3 Berthoud Spartans. The Spartans started off strong moving the football, but the Spartans drive would eventually stall. After the Spartans drive stalled, it was all Delta Panthers.

Sophomore Quarterback Ty Reed would connect with Damien Gallegos for a long touchdown strike. The Delta Panthers would go up 7-0.

Shortly after, Junior Athlete Landon Clay punches it into the endzone on a quarterback draw. The Panthers would then take a 14-0 lead.

The Panthers stayed on the gas, when Junior Athlete Esai Carrillo darted up the middle untouched from about five yards out giving the Delta Panthers a 21-0 lead at halftime.

The Delta Panthers would not look back from there, cruising to a 42-0 victory over the Berthoud High School Spartans.

The Panthers will move on to host the #8 Alamosa Moose in the next round.

#14 Rifle Bears defeat #3 Florence Huskies 14-7

Maybe the biggest seeding upset, not just in the class but the whole state the #14 seed Rifle Bears took out the #3 Florence Huskies on the road.

During the regular season Rifle Bears often won dominating on offense, however this time they got the win in a low scoring affair winning 14-7.

The Bears will take on a team they already beat in the regular season, the #11 Montezuma-Cortez Panthers in the next round.