Three Western Slope teams in 3A quarterfinals
Western Slope gridders flexed their muscles a bit in the first round of the playoffs last weekend, matching the Metro league with three teams advancing to the quarterfinals of the Class 3A postseason.
Palisade, Moffat County and Rifle are all in action at 1 p.m. Saturday with a berth in the semifinals on the line.
Rifle was the final qualifier out of the Western Slope but managed a 28-20 victory at Florence on Saturday. The Bears (8-3) get a home game Saturday against Conifer (10-1) of the Metro League.
Conifer features a stingy defense that allowed no opponent more than 15 points once this season. The Metro No. 2 seed advanced after a 20-13 victory over Silver Creek Saturday. Offensively, the Lobos boast a 1,000-yard back in Dan Delay and 1,000-yard passer in Stephen Penta.
Defending state champ Palisade (11-0) rolled to a first-round victory over Elizabeth and takes to the road again this weekend against the Metro League’s Englewood (9-2). Englewood downed Alamosa 20-12 in its playoff opener.
Moffat County has what is likely the toughest quarterfinal game, taking on unbeaten Niwot (11-0). Moffat (10-1) hosted Pueblo County and treated its fans to a 42-7 victory Saturday. Niwot advanced with an equally impressive victory, 47-2, over Evergreen. Due to winning the coin flip, however, Moffat does have the home-field advantage in Craig.
The only quarterfinal contest not involving a Western Slope team pits Sterling (8-3) against Centaurus (11-0). Sterling defeated Glenwood Springs to advance, while Centaurus edged Northridge last weekend.
– In the Class 2A football semifinals, Brush (9-2), which downed Roaring Fork in overtime Saturday, travels to Faith Christian (9-2), and Holy Family (11-0) hosts Eaton (8-3). Both games are at 1 p.m. Saturday.
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Colorado Mountain College’s men’s and women’s cross country teams both finished higher than their rankings coming in at the Nov. 14 National Junior College Athletic Association’s Division 1 Cross Country 2020 Championships.