KMTS FOOTBALL: GLENWOOD OVERCOMES SOGGY FIELD, DEVILS FOR HOMECOMING, LEAGUE OPENING WIN

GLENWOOD SPRINGS (10/5/18) – “ Our offense is built for this,” Glenwood Springs coach Pat Engle said of the rain-soaked Stubler Field prior to the Demons’ 41-0 Homecoming win over Eagle Valley in the Western Slope League opener for both teams.

The trio of Luke Gair, Gavin Olson, and Eliot Dwyer-Walz proved their coach a prophet, gaining 203 yards and reaching the end zone in five of Glenwood’s six, first-half possessions, starting the running clock before the halftime homecoming celebration.

Those festivities, which featured the football championship teams from 1978, 1980, and 2008, were brightened by the 41-0 halftime lead, which began with a short-field, seven-play, 45-yard drive, that concluded with the Dwyer-Walz’s 12 yard touchdown, his first score since the season opener, August 31.

After forcing the Devils’ second, three-and-out, Wyatt Ewer returned the punt 27 yards to the Eagle 28 yard line, and despite a holding penalty, hard running by Gair and Olson soon set up Gair’s 5-yard TD run for a 14-0 advantage with 4 minutes left in the first quarter.

Eagle’s next possession resulted in a change at quarterback, with freshman Will Geiman taking over for senior Jesse Moser, but the result was an interception by Erwin Rodriguez, which he returned 26 yards to the Devil 26. Three plays later, just 13 seconds after the second quarter began, Olson reached the end zone from the nine.

The defense, led by Olson’s 3rd-down pass breakup forced Eagle to kick again, and pressured the Devil punter into just a 15 yarder, however a pass lofted over the middle by Max Lemkau was intercepted. The turnover went for naught when Glenwood’s defense again forced a punt, this time blocking it with Kelton McPherson recovering the ball around the five and taking it across the goal line to fulfill every lineman’s dream. Sebastian Torres’ extra point made it 28-0 with 6:50 left in the half.

With their punt protection increasingly breaking down, Geiman attempted a 4th-and-10 pass, despite being on his own 31 yard line, and Ewer deflected it. After a five-yard penalty on the Devils, Olson broke loose around left end for a 26 yard TD at the 5:03 mark.

After Eagle Valley’s fifth three-and-out of the half, Ewer returned a short punt ten yards to the Devil 42, and following another 5-yard flag on the visitors, Gair finished the scoring on the evening by bowling over a would-be tackler and digging 37 yards for the score, starting the running clock with a little over two minutes until intermission.

Coach Engle brought in the reserves for the second half, which flew by because the clock only stopped when Glenwood took a timeout to get more back-ups into the game. Junior JP Simpson and sophomore Jahirie Labare combined to gain 47 yards and three first downs, but the Demon drive died on downs at Eagle’s 15.

The Devils managed to put together several first-downs, the initial one coming on a 4th-and-two penalty against Glenwood as the fourth quarter began, but yielded the ball back to Glenwood on downs at the Demon 12 just before time expired.

Neither Gair nor Olson, who scored two touchdowns apiece, carried the ball in the second half, with the former gaining 85 yards on 7 first-half carries, and the latter netting 73 on 8 attempts. Dwyer-Walz added 45 yards on 4 carries. The Demons had 203 yards at halftime, finishing with 257 for the game. Eagle Valley was held to 55 yards rushing on 28 attempts and their quarterbacks combined for 1-of-12 for 27 yards.

Next Thursday the Demons (2-4, 1-0 WSL) will travel to Stocker Stadium in Grand Junction to take on the number-one ranked 3A team in the state, Palisade (6-1, 2-0).

About Jack Jabbour

High school sports analyst
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