Devils late surge leads to 1st win of season
Lions 7 0 0 0 — 7
Devils 0 7 0 14 — 21
L - William Willis, 21 pass to Nick Ciccio, KG (Jon Schoene), 0;36
E – Garrett Martin, 2 run, KG (Alex Torres), 6:12
E – Martin, 1 run, KG (David Witt), 5:28
E – Martin, 56 run, KG, (Witt), 3:26
GYPSUM — The defense, a punt, a rollout and some extra effort delivered Eagle Valley a huge 21-7 win over Lutheran on Friday night at John Ramunno Field in Gypsum.
After two gut-wrenching losses in the last three weeks, the Devils (1-2) are finally in the win column.
It’s great to be playing a difficult nonconference schedule for the purposes of the rating-percentage index (RPI), but eventually a team needs to win and Eagle Valley broke out in style in the fourth quarter against the Lions.
Tied 7-7, and struggling for offense, Garrett Martin’s foot proved to be a weapon. The Lions fumbled a punt on their 31. After many stops and starts, Martin hit Noah Hermosillo on a third-and-15 for 26 yards and a first-and-goal on the Lutheran 9.
It took four plays and an extra effort on fourth down, but Martin pushed the ball over the line for a score. David Witt added the extra point — yep, Eagle Valley had two kickers on Friday night, instead of going for the two-pointer — and the Devils finally had a lead.
It is very appropriate that Tieghan Torbett and Griffin Lay played a game of “Meet me at the quarterback,” with two sacks of Lions quarterback William Willis. The Devils’ defense kept Eagle Valley in the game all night. The sacks forced a Lions punt, and Martin iced the game with a 56-yard scamper for his third score of the game. Hermosillo slammed the door shut with an interception.
Eagle Valley’s defense carried the load early, as the Devils’ offense had two three-and-outs. Lutheran used its spread, hurry-up offense to score late in the first quarter on a 12-play, 47-yard drive. Lions quarterback William Willis found Nick Ciccio for 22 yards and the score.
The Devils’ defense forced the Lions to turn the ball over on downs, capped by a sack by senior Corben Funk.
Eagle Valley’s offense got on track in the second quarter as Martin called his own number for 19 yards. Marten then found Torbett for 11 yards. The big play was a Martin rollout to Matthew Sanchez for 29 yards down to the Lions’ 2. Martin plunged in from there for a 7-7 tie at intermission, preserved by a goal-line stand at the buzzer from the Devils’ defense. Lutheran went for it on fourth-and-goal, but, despite protestations to the contrary, Willis’ knee was down on the 2.
Eagle Valley continues its rugged nonconference slate at Evergreen next week.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.