Titans top Pirates in overtime thriller
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
PEACH VALLEY, Colorado – As Olathe quarterback Trenton Jole rolled to his left, Coal Ridge outside linebacker Michael Shaw gave chase, wrapped his arms around scrambling passer and wrestled him to the ground for a sack.
It’s a sack that will not soon be forgotten, a sack that brought overtime to an end and delivered the Titans their first win over Olathe in school history.
“I wasn’t going to let go of him,” said Shaw, a senior. “I think that’s probably the highlight of my football career so far.”
Shaw’s fourth-down stop, which came after Coal Ridge scored on its overtime possession, put the finishing touches on a 13-6 win over the visiting Pirates.
Moments earlier, Chris Contreras surged up the middle for a 3-yard TD to give the Titans the lead in the college-style overtime format, in which teams alternate possessions from the opponent’s 10-yard line.
“Our word of the week was determination,” first-year Coal Ridge coach Kyle Sager said. “They just never quit. They believe in each other and today, in the pregame speech, I said, ‘Play for this community that loves you so much. Play for each other.’ And they did.”
The Titans needed every ounce of determination to earn the win.
Prior to the overtime defensive stop, Coal Ridge twice stymied the Pirates inside the 5-yard line.
Early in the fourth quarter, Olathe moved the ball all the way to the Titans’ 2 but failed to score. Later in the frame, Alec Herrera ended a Pirate threat with an interception in the end zone.
“Coal Ridge played a great game,” Olathe coach Ryan Corn said. “They kept us out of the end zone. They just wanted it a little more.”
Corn’s squad only scored on the game’s opening drive, moving 78 yards on a 15-play march that was capped by Troy Rose’s 1-yard TD run. The Pirates, who ate up 8 minutes, 40 seconds of first-quarter clock, went up 6-0 after a failed kick.
Neither team had much luck cashing in on offense from there on out.
Contreras, a speedy junior running back, finally broke the ice late in the third quarter, taking a pitch and darting around the left edge for the 10-yard tying score. That made it 6-6 with 1:15 left in the third quarter.
That’s where the score stood until overtime.
The win pushed Coal Ridge to 3-1 overall and to 2-0 in the 2A Western Slope League. Four-time defending league champion Olathe dropped to 0-4 and to 0-2 in the 2A WSL.
“Our production was great,” Corn said. “We just fell short inside the 10, what, three or four times? I don’t even know. Either way, we’re a very young team. We need to get over that hump. Once we get over the hump, we’ll be fine.”
Rose led the Pirates with 109 rushing yards on 26 carries. Jole added 81 yards on 15 totes and Jacob Solseth had an interception on defense.
Quarterback Gunnar Pagni led the Titans with 76 yards on 10 carries. Shaw had 39 yards on three takes and Brooks Pressler recovered a fumble on defense in the fourth quarter.
Coal Ridge will welcome Pagosa Springs as its homecoming foe next week, while Olathe will play host to Aspen.
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