Rifle does enough to knock off ‘Dogs
Craig Daily Press
CRAIG ” Rifle did just enough to win, and that’s a story eerily familiar to coach Damon Wells.
“It’s scary because we’re doing a lot of things similar to last year’s team,” Wells said. “We just found a way to win at the end of the season.”
The Bears escaped a hard-charging Moffat County team in the fourth quarter for a 12-7 win. It was a victory that nearly secured the Bears chances for a playoff spot, and shattered the Bulldogs’ hopes.
It wasn’t pretty on either side.
“We only have 14 kids who play right now and all of them did well,” Wells said. “They all get the credit.”
The Bears stopped Moffat’s first drive after one first down and then drove the ball 73 yards in 13 plays. Junior Colby McFarlin went in from 3 yards for the score.
During the drive, the Bears overcame 35 yards in penalties.
“We really had 100 yards of offense that first drive because of penalties,” Wells said. “We kept our heads in it thought.”
The extra point was missed to leave the Bears with a 6-0 lead with 2 minutes, 48 seconds remaining in the first quarter.
The rest of the half was a defensive battle.
Moffat only gained one more first down and Rifle fumbled once and punted twice. Going into half the teams combined for 172 yards of offense, with 100 of it on Rifle’s first possession.
The Bulldog coaches ripped into their team during halftime.
“We had enthusiasm but no emotion,” Moffat County coach Kip Hafey said. “There wasn’t any fight.”
The second half the Bulldogs started to wrap up better, except on one play. McFarlin went through three Moffat County players’ arms for a 52-yard touchdown run during Rifle’s second possession in the second half. The play came after a Derek Duran fumble was recovered by Bryce Enewold on Rifle’s 42. Another missed extra point left Rifle with a 12-point lead.
The Bulldogs capitalized on a Rifle turnover with a 10-yard touchdown pass to Cass Thompson on fourth down for their only points of the game.
Rifle had 232 yards of offense all night, with almost a quarter of that coming on McFarlin’s second touchdown run. McFarlin finished with 14 carries for 93 yards.
“We scored when we were inside the 20 tonight and that’s something we struggled with early,” Wells said. “All of the facets are starting to come together.”
The Bears will seal a playoff spot with a win against Montezuma-Cortez next week. The loss breaks Moffat’s three-year streak of consecutive playoff games.
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