Rams win thriller versus Titans
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood prings, CO Colorado
PEACH VALLEY, Colorado ” Ryan Weimer surveyed the defense, saw Coal Ridge had 11 men stuffed in the box and called an audible.
He then took the snap and chucked a quick pass to Cameron Ellis, who snuck through the masses at the line of scrimmage into a completely vacant secondary.
Fifteen yards or so later, Ellis was in the end zone and Roaring Fork had the clinching touchdown in what would be a 27-20 win at Coal Ridge on Friday.
“We have an audible play, Y Pop,” Weimer said. “I saw them stacking the line and I just threw it.”
The TD toss, which came with 2 minutes, 32 seconds left in the game, gave the visiting Rams a 27-14 lead at the time.
But Roaring Fork had one more storm to weather as scrappy Coal Ridge wasn’t done.
After Bradey Gasaway returned the ball 37 yards on the ensuing kickoff, the Titans rumbled 54 yards to the end zone on just four plays. The finisher came courtesy of Josh Alsop, who covered the final 17 yards with a TD run with 1:11 to go.
That left the outcome to an onside kick.
Recover and Roaring Fork left Peach Valley a winner. Let Coal Ridge pounce on it and give the feisty Titans new life.
Freshman Clay Gross, all 5-foot-5 and 120 pounds of him, delivered the former, pouncing on wild-hopping kick off the foot of the Titans’ Alex Klein to ice the victory.
“That was, first of all, a great kick,” Weimer said. “And it was a great job by our guys to crowd around him so he could find the time to grab it.”
It took some work for Weimer and the Rams to get to that point.
Roaring Fork (4-5 overall, 3-3 in the 2A Western Slope League) went up 7-0 at the outset, marching 75 yards on 12 plays to a score on its opening drive. After running the ball on 10 of the previous 11 plays, Weimer found Michael Black on a slant and the Rams took a 7-0 lead.
Coal Ridge responded with 14 unanswered points, a run jump-started by running back Bradey Gasaway, who broke free outside and sprinted up the left sideline for a 67-yard TD. Klein’s extra point missed its mark and the score was 7-6 early in the second quarter.
The Titans found the end zone again less than four minutes later when quarterback Keenan Grumley connected with 6-foot-8 receiver Klein on a 63-yard TD pass.
Gasaway ran in the two-point conversion to make it 14-7 and neither team scored again before halftime.
After sitting out the first half for undisclosed reasons, Roaring Fork’s Soren Phibbs wasted little time making his presence felt in the third quarter.
Carrying the ball nine times on a 14-play, 73-yard opening drive, Phibbs rushed for 60 yards, the final two of those covering the distance to the goal line as Roaring Fork tied the game at 14 with 6:41 left in the third.
Roaring Fork followed it up with a TD on its next drive, a 72-yarder capped by a Dana Holley 6-yard TD run just over two minutes into the fourth quarter.
That set the stage for Weimer and company’s late-game heroics.
Phibbs finished with 83 yards rushing on 16 carries, while Weimer completed 9 of 19 passes for 168 yards. Black caught three of those passes for 88 yards receiving and Ellis two for 56.
Phibbs’ second-half surfacing changed the complexion of the game.
“It definitely loosened things up a bit,” Roaring Fork head coach Greg Holley said.
Gasaway paced Coal Ridge’s offense with 109 yards rushing on 11 carries and 41 yards receiving on three grabs. Alsop finished with 27 yards on five rushes and Grumley connected on 7 of 14 passes for 106 yards.
Titans head coach Scott Parker, while unhappy with the loss, appreciated the fact his squad went down swinging.
“The effort was fantastic,” said the first-year coach, whose team dropped to 4-5 overall and to 1-5 in the 2A WSL. “Our kids are fighters. They showed that they’re tough.
Roaring Fork just had one more big play than we did in the second half.”
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