Rams’ offensive formations make Bulldogs look bad at home
Assistant Sports Editor
HOTCHKISS ” Change, sometimes, is more than good. In Hotchkiss’ case unwillingness to make changes to their defense allowed Roaring Fork to make the Bulldogs look bad.
A fact the Rams gladly accepted while posting a 45-14 rout of the Bulldogs.
The score seemed fitting for a team whose field doesn’t have a working clock, a scoreboard, or a share of first place in the 2A Western Slope Conference after Roaring Fork’s win Saturday.
“Offensively, we decided if (Hotchkiss) likes to stay in one defensive formation, we would shift from one formation to another and they wouldn’t adjust to it,” said Rams head coach Matt Hauptly.
“So when were running around all over the field, that’s what that was all about. We kept doing it and they never adjusted to it.”
Roaring Fork’s ability to change the looks of its offense at will allowed the Rams to take a three-touchdown lead by the end of the first quarter and take a 32-0 advantage at halftime.
The huge margin Roaring Fork posted on their stunned hosts also turned an anticipated showdown for early supremacy of the Class 2A Western Slope Conference among the two teams into a blowout.
The win moves the unbeaten Rams to 2-0 in the WSC (4-0 overall).
“I really was surprised,” said Rams running back Jake Bowman of the final score.
Before retiring to the bench for the day midway in the third quarter, Bowman’s presence, along with his cleat marks became permanent fixtures in Hotchkiss’ end zone.
The senior scored the first of his three touchdowns on a 35-yard run on Roaring Fork’s third offensive play in the game. Later, Bowman added touchdowns of 47 and 84 yards as part of a game-high 185 rushing yards in only seven carriers.
His longest run of the day, which ballooned the Rams’lead to 38-0 in the third quarter, came from the work of the offensive line.
“The line was dominating,” Bowman said. “I had tons of choices here and there to run through. I couldn’t have done it without them.”
When Bowman took a break, the acrobatic act of Rams receiver Parker Nieslanik took center stage.
Of his two TD catches, the senior’s second score of 24-yards was Michael Jordanish.
Working his way between three defenders at the Hotchkiss 10, Nieslanik finished the job by outjumping all three on a toss from quarterback Kade Gianinette, then walking in for six.
Roaring Fork plays Aspen at home Friday.
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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.