2A League Breakdown

Class 2A Quarterfinals Breakdown and Predictions

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Picture by Kirsten Westbrook (Bayfield vs Montezuma-Cortez)

Class 2A Quarterfinals Breakdown and Predictions

#1 Bayfield vs #9 Faith Christian

All 4 quarterfinals feature most of my Top 10 teams through the year and I believe every game should be a good game.  Bayfield overcame an early deficient to get past Montezuma-Cortez.  Montezuma-Cortez gave their best effort and ran out of gas.  Montezuma-Cortez defense played stout through three quarters and nearly pulled the upset but 19 unanswered points by Bayfield pushed them past Montezuma-Cortez.  Bayfield defensively held their ground as best they could and really stepped up when it mattered in the 4th quarter during the comeback.  Bayfield defensively had a few players step up John Foutz, Cael Schaefer, Daniel Westbrook, Isaac Lorenzen, and David Hawkins all stepped up when it was needed for the Bayfield defense.  Offensively Bayfield has struggled to be consistent for an entire game using back to back comeback in the second half to win their past two games.  Bayfield had a solid outing from Hayden Farmer at QB but he will be needed the rest of the way to give more production to open the running game for Bayfield.  David Hawkins led all rushers will 80 yards rushing.  Keyon Prior also had a huge impact in the game with 76 yards rushing and 99 yards receiving.  Bayfield goes up against Faith Christian next and their defense is very good and will test Bayfield offense.  Bayfield must take care of the ball on offense and I think their success will lay with Hayden Farmer.  Defensively Bayfield must stop the run and force Faith Christian to pass the ball.

Faith Christian was in a defensive slugfest with Kent Denver in their opening round game. Faith Christian was able to get past Kent Denver scoring their lone touchdown in the 3rd quarter and a field goal in the 2nd quarter to win 9 to 7.  Faith Christian defense is the reason why they won this game.  Faith Christian defensively kept Kent Denver to 51 yards passing and 132 yards rushing.  Faith Christian also forced 1 Interception and 1 fumble in the game.  Michael Osgood led all tacklers for Faith Christian and Aron Buchman and Graham Kroll all stepped up for the Faith Christian defense.  Faith Christian defense will have to step up their game next week as they face another balanced offense.  Faith Christian offensively was slowed down but was able to get solid rushing from David Nagy 86 yards rushing and Erick Granados 80 yards rushing.  Faith Christian passing attack was slowed down as well passing for just 30 yards.  Faith Christian offensively will be tested by a one of the best defenses in 2A.  Faith Christian success on offense this week will come down to their passing attack opening their rushing attack.  Faith Christian defensively must keep the game close again, but their defense has stepped up along the way.

This will be a very good game between two very good defenses.  Faith Christian will need their defense to play another great game and they will be tested by a Balanced offensive attack.  Faith Christian defense can have success if they do slow Bayfield rushing attack.  Bayfield defensively will focus on stopping the run and forcing Faith Christian to beat them with the pass.  Bayfield run defense is one of the best in 2A.  Offensively Hayden Farmer must have a big game to keep Faith Christian from loading the box.  I am going with Bayfield in this game.  I think Bayfield defense and their balanced offensive attack will help them in a very close game.

#4 La Junta vs #5 Salida

La Junta continued their perfect season beating Berthoud last week 40 to 6.  La Junta offensively was all rushing and they had some success rushing for 439 yards.  Jon Nuschy had a monster game rushing for 217 yards and 4 TDs.  La Junta also had big contribution from Antonio Chavez 112 yards and 1 TD.  La Junta big offensive line has been another reason for their success.  La Junta offensively will hope to find a little more balance this week against a talented defense.  La Junta defensively played outstanding holding Berthoud to just 77 yards rushing and 100 yards passing.  La Junta also forced 1 INT but their ability to stop a tough RPO offense Berthoud ran was impressive.  La Junta now has to refocus for a physical Salida team.  La Junta defensively this week will look to stop a physical rushing attack.  Offensively La Junta will be tested.  La Junta will need Jon Nuschy to have a huge game both thru the air and on the ground.  Salida defense is a legit defense and will force La Junta to try and balance their attack.

Salida last week faced a Pass Heavy Aspen team and their defense knew they had to step up.  Salida defensively stepped up when needed.  Salida offense wore down Aspen defense as they outscored Aspen 26 to 12 in the second half.  Salida was able to win 33 to 20.  Salida defensively came to play holding Aspen to just 56 yards rushing. Salida was able to slow Aspen passing attack holding them to 174 yards passing.  Salida special teams may need to step up as well as they did give up a kickoff return for a TD.  Offensively Salida had a huge day running the ball racking up 398 yards.  Senior Vince Deleo had the biggest day with 245 yards rushing and 4 TD’s.  Salida also had some success passing throwing for 70 yards but only completed 33.3% of their passes.  Salida will need their passing attack to come together more next week as they play a tough defense.  Salida defense must step up next week as well and must contain Jon Nuschy.

This game may be the best game of the weekend if you like smash mouth football.  Both teams want to run the ball and both teams play physical football.  Salida will have to play great defense and their offense must all come together to pull the upset.  La Junta must have success running the ball and their defense must have success stopping the run.  I am going with La Junta in this game.  This will be a very tight game and could see it coming down to a touchdown difference.

#3 Basalt vs #6 Platte Valley

Basalt moved into the quarterfinals beating D’Evelyn 26-14.  Basalt had a huge first half scoring 21 unanswered point.  D’Evelyn did respond scoring 14 points in the second half but Basalt did enough in the first half to win.  Basalt defensively did a good job slowing down a very good offense.  Basalt gave up 122 yards passing and 74 yards rushing.  D’Evelyn QB Evan Willis did have a solid day but D’Evelyn defense limited the rushing attack which helped pave the way.  Offensively Basalt had some success running the ball rushing for 230 yards.  Jake Reardon led all rushers with 151 yards and 1 TD.  Basalt offensively though was limited in the second half.  Trevor Reuss also had a solid day for Basalt passing for 75 yards and rushing for 46.  Basalt offensively this week will be tested by Platte Valley, but they could find some success running the ball.  Defensively Basalt will be tested by a very good offense and a very good QB.

Platte Valley moved into the quarterfinals beating Delta 45-21.  Platte Valley scored 25 points in the first half and then 17 in the fourth quarter to pull finish the game off.  Platte Valley defensively has had plenty of success this year but have given up point towards the end of the year.  Platte Valley defensively must come to play to stop a very good rushing attack.  Offensively Platte Valley is led by do it all QB Trevor Wehrman and running back Ernesto Rios.  Offensively Platte Valley is balanced in their offensive attack and are not going to be easy to stop.  This week Platte Valley may be facing the best defense they have faced since playing Eaton in September.  Platte Valley will need their QB to have a huge game.  Last year Platte Valley lost a 9-6 game to Eaton in the quarterfinals.  This year Platte Valley will know what it takes to get into the semifinals their offense must come ready to play.

This won’t be the defensive slugfest the first two quarterfinals will feature.  Basalt must establish the run to have success.  Basalt defense will be tested by a very good offense and they will have to step up.  Platte Valley defensively must focus on stopping the run.  If Platte Valley can limit the rushing attack they will have success.  Offensively they will be tested by a very good offense and QB Trevor Wehrman must have a huge day.  I am going with Platte Valley in this game.  I think Platte Valley balanced offense will be effective.  This should be a good game, but Platte Valley is my pick.

#2 Resurrection Christian vs #7 Rifle

The final game of the quarterfinals features two very physical teams.  Resurrection Christian prides themselves on defense and a heavy dosage of run on offense.  Resurrection Christian defensively has given up just 68 point this season and their defense is the reason they are so good.  Resurrection Christian advanced to the quarterfinals beating Alamosa 28-6.  Alamosa played tough and showed their defense can play.  Resurrection Christian took a 14-6 lead into halftime and then scored 14 in the fourth quarter to pull away.  This game was close but Resurrection Christian defense was the difference in the game.  Resurrection Christian forced 5 interceptions, 1 fumble, and blocked 2 punts.  Zane Zuhlke and Tanner Applebee were the leaders on defense for Resurrection Christian.  Resurrection Christian offense did not have the best day and Alamosa forced 4 turnovers as well.  Resurrection Christian still ran for 253 yards and Kyle Lueck had a good day rushing for 94 yards.  Resurrection Christian will need to have a better day from QB Buck Coors as he had 7 passing attempts and threw two interceptions.  Offensively Resurrection Christian must take care of the football.  Defensively Resurrection Christian must focus on stopping the run or they will be in for a long day.

Rifle moved into the quarterfinals beating Eaton 27-0.  They have not posted stats for the game, but I do know Rifle had a huge 21-point third quarter.  Rifle is a run heavy team led by Tanner Vines.  Vines has run for 1,987 yards and 19 TDs.  The team has run for 3,412 yards and 37 TDs.  Rifle offensively line must be credited with the effectiveness of the rushing attack as teams know It’s coming.  Rifle this week faces a very tough defense and they must be effective running the ball.  Defensively Rifle is no joke either giving up just 110 points on the year.  Rifle defensively limited Basalt offense and their defense must be able to stop the run this week.  Rifle play very physical and the team they are playing does as well and should be a slugfest.

This is going to be a very physical football game.  Both teams want to run the ball effectively and both play tough defense.  Rifle must establish the run to be effective and must take care of the football.  Resurrection Christian has one goal and it’s to stop the run.  I am going with Resurrection Christian in this game.  I think their defense should be able to slow Rifle down.  This won’t be a high scoring game and could see the final score being under 20.