Bulldogs rout Huskies, 61-14 | VailDaily.com

Bulldogs rout Huskies, 61-14

BMFB Taylor Beairsto PU 10-19-07

EAGLE-VAIL ” Palisade football made itself feel quite at home Friday during Battle Mountain’s Homecoming, thumping the Huskies, 61-14, at Phelan Field.

The No. 4-ranked Bulldogs left no doubt, taking a 29-0 lead with just 1:38 left in the first quarter.

“I was pleased. They were focused,” Palisade coach John Arledge said. “They did exactly what we wanted them to do. It was a good win for us. We just want to get a little better at the things we do, running the ball, finishing, our first down-yardage ratio. The kids did a good job all-around.”

Palisade’s bread and butter, as always, was it rushing game, led by Zach Adair with 16 carries for 179 yards and two touchdowns, followed by Aaron Wagler who toted the ball 13 times for another 88 yards with two scores.

Bulldogs quarterback Jake Appling was an efficient 7-for-10 for 123 yards through the air, also accounting for two TDs. Palisade led, 41-7, at the half and outgained the Huskies 410-110 yards after 24 minutes.

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“They’re a very good football team,” Huskies coach Jason Sedlak said. “They’re the fourth-ranked team in the state. They have a winning tradition. They know how to win. They know how to play tough, but with our kids right now, it’s just coming out and executing. We three-and-outed ourselves the first two times. Kids were just dropping balls and getting bad snaps. All it is is catch and pitch. We didn’t do that in the first couple of drives.”

Cruise control

And that was pretty much it for the Huskies. Palisade opened its first drive by ramming the ball with Adair and Wagler. Wagler finished the 10-play drive with 9- and 7-yard scampers for a 7-0 lead.

The Bulldogs only needed two plays on their next possession with Adair flying 56 yards for the score. After recovering a fumble deep in Battle Mountain’s end, Wagler plunged in from 5 yards out.

After another Battle Mountain three-and-out, Palisade went to Adair for a 43-yard run.

Battle Mountain finally got its first first down of the game late in the first down and used that drive to get on the board. Todd Walker hooked up with Kyle Woolley on a 20-yard strike for a touchdown. Woolley got tagged with a strange 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct call for dunking the ball over the goal post in celebration, while his team was trailing 29-7.

Palisade didn’t seem traumatized by that, finding the house on a 15-yard reverse to Kyler Rentie. Appling went by air for Palisade’s final score of the half, a 47-yard bomb to Billy Logsdon.

Jeremy Windham hooked up with Walker for 12 yards and a touchdown in the third quarter. Battle Mountain only was able to move the ball through the air with Windham completing 13-of-26 passes for 96 yards, while Walker was 8-for-16 for 78 yards.

“I think some of our younger kids are stepping up,” Sedlak said. “Parke Robbins is doing a great job. He’s really figuring it out. He’s making some plays. Josh Kundolf played well tonight. Todd’s going to be a player out there and we’re trying to feature him wherever we can. We knew we had to spread that team. We weren’t going to get anything between the tackles.”

Battle Mountain, without the services of starting running back Ryan Hedrick, who was out with a back injury, finished with a total of 4 yards rushing.

Palisade finished the rout with a 9-yard TD pass from Appling to Wagler and a 1-yard dive from back-up quarterback Jason Logsdon.

Eagle Valley next

Palisade upped its record to 7-2 overall and 6-1 in the 3A Slope, while Battle Mountain dropped to 1-7 and 1-6.

Battle Mountain heads down to Gypsum for its annual tilt with Eagle Valley.

“They’ve got 11 guys on the field the same as we do,” Sedlak said. “We’ll just watch film, put something together next week and see what happens.”

Meanwhile, the Bulldogs have their bye week and host the Devils Nov. 2.

“We just have got to go to work,” Arledge said. “I think we’ve just got to get a little healthy. At this time of the season, everyone’s tired. The season’s long.”

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or cfreud@vaildaily.com.

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