Demons scare Steamboat
GSPI Sports Editor
It’s early for Halloween, but the No. 5-ranked Steamboat Springs High School football team got a scare Friday night.
The scare wasn’t from the lightning that snaked across the sky above Stubler Memorial Field, that just delayed the start of the game for 30 minutes.
It was the Demons.
Glenwood Springs is likely out of the playoff hunt, but the Demons proved they can’t be overlooked by any team, regardless of rank or record.
Steamboat rallied from a seven-point deficit, then held off a stubborn Glenwood squad for a 21-14 victory to stay in contention for the Western Slope Conference title.
“We’ve known all year that we could play with anybody in the league,” Glenwood head coach Craig Denney said. “We just finally put it all together in one game.
With the victory, Steamboat improves to 3-1 (6-1 overall). Glenwood falls to 1-3 (2-5).
“Our kids came in and we were just right to be knocked off,” said Steamboat coach Mark Drake, hinting at some overconfidence in his players. “Fortunately, we hung in there and didn’t lose our composure.”
The composure was most evident in the fourth quarter, as Sailor running back Brad Bonner scored a pair of touchdowns in the frame and the Steamboat defense put a lid on the Demons potential game-tying drive.
The final quarter was much different than the start of the game.
After taking the ball 44 yards in 12 plays on the game’s opening drive for a 7-0 lead, then stuffing the Demons offense in three plays, the potential for a rout was apparent.
But then the Glenwood defense and special team got into the act.
“(The Sailors) are a passing team, so we said, `Let’s take away the passing stuff first.'”
The plan, that included dropping more linebackers into coverage to help out the secondary, started paying off early.
Jake Greer picked off a pass from Steamboat quarterback David May to open the second quarter. On Steamboat’s next drive the Sailors threw the ball on four consecutive downs. The first was a completion.
The next three were incomplete passes highlighted by crushing hits out of a Demon secondary led by Mike Hoban and Adam Vincent.
“They’re good kids and fairly well disciplined back there at safety,” Denney said.
The Demon offense finally got into the act late in the half. Vincent returned a punt to the Steamboat 30 after taking a reverse from Hoban.
Nine plays later – which included the Demons only pass completion of the game – Matt Wilson powered in from the 1-yard line to even the score at 7-all with 18 seconds left in the half.
In the third quarter Wilson intercepted May and the Demons made the Sailors pay. Vincent broke free for a 45-yard run to the Sailors’ 2-yard line and Wilson powered it in on the next play to go up 14-7 with 2:06 left in the third quarter.
Vincent finished with a team-high 83 yards rushing on 10 carries. He also had an interception and nearly 90 return yards. Wilson racked up 80 yards rushing and Hoban, who played quarterback in the game, had 23.
Unfortunately, for the Demons, Steamboat’s ground game was just getting started.
The Sailors drove 75 yards on eight plays without leaving the ground on the ensuing drive to even the score at 14-all.
The Demons then fumbled on the exchange between Hoban and Vincent on a reverse to set up the Sailors at the 35. Bonner scored his second touchdown of the quarter three plays later on a 3-yard run with 5:10 remaining.
Bonner finished with a game-high 91 yards.
Glenwood travels to Delta for another conference game Friday, while Steamboat hosts Rifle.?
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The Coal Ridge High boys suffered their first 3A Western Slope League loss of the year Thursday night on the road at Gunnison, falling to the defending league champion Cowboys 65-45.