Eagle Valley runs, passes past Longhorns
Longhorns 0 0 0 0 — 0
Devils 6 21 0 6 — 33
E - Kyle Williams, 2 run, KNG, 0:59
E - Jay Neal, 13 run, run good, 4:45
E - Oscar Rubio, 41 interception return, KNG, 3:50
E - Garrett Martin to Bryce Muehlethaler, 12 pass, KG, 0:00
E - Cole Harper, 2 run, KNG, 6:01
GYPSUM — Eagle Valley football is undefeated at John Ramunno Field.
OK, it’s the same turf as the old Hot Stuff Stadium, but the Devils wanted to win their home opener and it’s a nice bit of trivia.
Eagle Valley ran — and passed — its way past Basalt, 33-0, on Friday night in Gypsum to complete its nonconference slate at 3-0.
Yes, you read that correctly. The Devils used the forward pass, which is where the quarterback throws the ball forward to a receiver for a positive yardage gain. (We simply explain the concept since the three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-rubber has been in fashion for quite a while in Gypsum.)
The shocker was that the Devils actually ran a two-minute offense to cap the first half.
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Eagle Valley took over the ball on its own 2-yard line with less than two minutes before the break. With memories of Thursday night’s Broncos-Chiefs game, one would have thought the Devils would have gone conservative, but this is apparently a new day. After Jay Neal ran the ball twice to get the Devils out of the shadow of their own goal posts, Garrett Martin took to the air for 34 yards, finding Matthew Sanchez. Bryce Muehlethaler pulled in an 8-yarder, and then Martin found Sanchez for another 32 yards.
The Devils did a nice job of hustling down the field, and Martin spiked the ball — Eagle Valley was out of timeouts. On the final play of the half, Martin found Muehlethaler on a perfect flag pattern into the end zone for a 27-0 lead.
One could see that Eagle Valley was working on the pass early on, though most of the team’s first drive was on the ground with the usual mixture of Neal and Kyle Williams. The latter put Eagle Valley up 6-0 on a 2-yard scamper. In the second quarter, two slant passes — one to Sanchez and the other to Charlie Fessenden — set up a 13-yard run for Neal.
BIG DEFENSIVE PLAYS
Not to be left out of the proceedings, Eagle Valley’s defense did its part, stuffing the Longhorns on one fourth down. Oscar Rubio contributed a 41-yard pick-six to make it 20-0.
In the second half, Eagle Valley’s Trever LaFramboise effectively ended a Basalt drive with a hard, yet clean hit on Longhorns running back Ricky Perez. Perez did not return to the game. Eagle Valley recorded a sack on the Longhorns’ next possession. In the fourth quarter, the Devils jumped all over a Basalt fumble, making the recovery. That turnover set up another Devils’ drive. David Witt got some carries and Noah Hermosillo ripped off a 16-yarder. Martin to Muehlethaler for 15 yards kept the march alive. Cole Harper plunged in from 2 yards out to make it 33-0.
The Devils still picked up their fair share of flags on Friday, continuing a trend from last week’s game at Battle Mountain. That certainly will be on the to-do list as the team prepares for Rifle and the opening of 3A Slope play next week.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.