Rifle Bears claw through snow and Summit to finish 9-1
Summit vs. Rifle
1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q Final
Summit 0 0 6 0 6
Rifle 20 21 8 7 55
FRISCO — With a fresh coat of snow on the field and more falling well into halftime, the fierce, fast and dominating Rifle Bears (9-1) blew by the Summit Tigers 55-6.
With the win, the Bears finish the regular season with a 9-1 overall record (6-1 3A Western Slope League), good for second place in the league behind the undefeated Delta Panthers, who topped the Palisade Bulldogs 27-21 Friday.
Now, the Bears await Sunday’s playoff seedings to determine where they’ll play in the first round of the state playoffs. At 9-1 and second overall in the 3A WSL standings, there’s a good chance that the Bears will host a first-round playoff game.
The Tigers and Bears both had six drives in the first 24 minutes, with the visiting team managing to score on each one. By the time both teams returned to the snow for the second half, the score was 41-0 in favor of the Bears.
And Rifle didn’t stop there. The pace of play slowed in the second half, but the Bears continued to score every time they had the ball while wasting five to six minutes on each drive.
Rifle entered the game at 8-1 on the season and 5-1 in the 4A Western Slope, which had them facing a potential three-way tie for the league title with Palisade and Delta. (Those two met in Delta on Friday as well. Delta won 27-21 in a rough-and-tumble game to remain undefeated in the Slope.)
The Tigers finally broke finally broke through late in the third quarter. From their own 30, senior wide receiver-turned-quarterback Riley Beck lined up with fellow senior Tony Finley, the go-to running back for the evening. Beck took the snap and flicked it to Finley as he ran a route through the backfield to the opposing side. It’s the sort of play that Rifle had ID’ed and shut down nearly every time the Tigers tried.
But, this time, the Tigers had a trick up their sleeve. After the flick, Finley continued to the home sideline for a pass from Beck. The Bears D-line was fooled, Beck completed the toss, and then Finley turned on the afterburners for a 70-yard touchdown.
The stands erupted in a flurry of blankets and hot cocoa.
The Bears punched in a final TD and picked off Beck on the Tigers’ final drive to end the game on a knee.
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