COLBRAN — There really is no need to block a punt if you can just tackle the guy instead.
Vail Christian’s Alex Davis had the big play on special teams early and the Saints rolled to a 38-8 season opening win on Saturday afternoon in Colbran.
Vail Christian’s defense pushed the Cowboys back on their first possession and Plateau Valley attempted to punt.
Davis wrecked that nicely, giving the Saints the ball on the Cowboys’ 4. It was all blue, silver and white from there.
“It’s always great to see,” Saints senior Sug Ellsworth said. “Our guys practice hard and it pays off when you see it happen in a game.”
Sug, the running back
Ellsworth is not a newcomer to offense, but it appears that he will be one of the featured running backs in 2014. While still being a defensive leader at linebacker, Ellsworth carried the ball 11 times for 103 yards.
His first carry was for a 4-yard touchdown, the first of three on the day.
And like all good running backs should, he gave props to his linemen, Max Schramm, Clayton Davis and Ryan Hethcote.
“They definitely take away the hits.” Ellsworth said.
A 9-yard run from Ellsworth made it 16-0 in the first quarter, Quarterback Mike Lange only attempted two passes on the day, but one of them went for 77 yards and touchdown, so that works. Alex Davis was on the receiving end there.
After Ellsworth’s third score, a 16-yard run, Lange called his own number for 40 yards and six.
Up 38-0 at the half, coach Tim Pierson flushed in the younger players.
“We executed part of our offense,” the coach said. “We had new installs on things. We executed well. Our blocking was fine. (Plateau Valley) shifted on us and we had to change blocking assignments. We’re still playing too high on defensive coverage, but defense played excellently, even the young guys at the end.”
Ellsworth led the defense with five solo tackles, while Caleb Sharpe had an interception.
The Saints (1-0) open conference play in a revamped Central League on Friday night against Longmont Christian.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.