KMTS Game of the Week: Demons Survive Turnover Battle With Huskies

GLENWOOD SPRINGS(10/13/17) – In a freaky Friday the 13th festival of miscues, the Glenwood Demons celebrated Homecoming by halting a three-game losing streak and handing Battle Mountain its fifth straight loss, 21-14.
The two teams combined for a dozen fumbles, eighteen penalties, and eight turnovers.

The decisive play of the game followed, naturally, an exchange of turnovers early in the second quarter and an intentional grounding penalty against Battle Mountain quarterback Traver Goldberg, which backed the Huskies up to their own two yard line. Nelson Ledezma, whose 42 yard field goal attempt near the first period’s end was thwarted by a bad snap, had his punt from the end zone blocked by Erwin Rodriquez, who also fell on the ball for a touchdown to tie the score at 7 when Tyler Dietrich booted the extra point with 7:15 to go in the half.

Glenwood had failed to capitalize on an earlier turnover at the Husky 23 where Wyatt Ewer recovered a fumbled punt. Trailing 7-0 after a 72-yard swing pass from Goldberg to Charlie Morrow set up Nick Walter’s 2-yard TD at 6:46, John Jensen relieved starting QB Brady Steen, but overthrew three receivers to turn the ball back over on downs.

Battle Mountain, which picked up six first-downs to just one for Glenwood in the first quarter, drove to the Demon 25 before a holding penalty and the poor snap on the field goal try ended the scoring attempt.

The Huskies ground out three more first downs after Glenwood tied the score in the second period, but Jack Richards recovered Goldberg’s fumble at midfield with two minutes until intermission. The quarterback platoon continued with Steen returning to complete six straight passes, the last one to Gavin Olson for a 9-yard TD and a 14-7 halftime lead. Steen was 10-for-10 passing in the quarter for 122 yards.

Glenwood capitalized on another Battle Mountain mistake in the third quarter as the snap sailed 22 yards past punter Ledezma, giving the Demons the ball at the Husky nine yard line. Miguel Herrera sliced through the line for his ninth touchdown in the last five games, giving Glenwood a 21-7 lead with 7:17 to go in the third.

Having had no luck with their long-snapping for punts, the Huskies decided to go for it facing 4th-and-15 at their own eight yard line following the kickoff. Goldberg, who had just evaded an end-zone safety on second down, again went to the swing pass, this time to Jacob Bukovich, and the tall senior broke several tackles for a 17-yard gain and first down at the 25. That change in fortunes propelled the Huskies to four more first downs, including a 4th-and-one encroachment on Glenwood at the Demon 29. Another defensive encroachment gave Battle Mountain a first-and-goal at the six, but a holding call backed them up ten yards. Finally Goldberg capped the 14-play, 7-minute drive by connecting with Bukovich for a 13-yard TD with 21 seconds left in the quarter. The Demons ran just one play, Herrera’s touchdown, in the quarter, but it would be enough.

The miscues continued with Dylan Albright’s 88-yard kick return from the one yard line being penalized on a rare “assisting the runner” call. A pass completion from Steen to Herrera was negated by a holding penalty and on 4th-and-9 from the 25, the two again connected, but Herrera lost a fumble at the Husky 18.

Battle Mountain put together three first downs to reach Glenwood’s 36, but a holding penalty left them facing 4th-and 21. Another swing pass to Bukovich looked like it may move the chains until Jensen’s sure tackle stopped him short of the first down.

A tipped pass interception gave the Huskies another chance with 6:49 to play, but Ewer returned the robbery, intercepting Goldberg at the Demon 37 with 3:47 remaining. Glenwood tried to run some clock, but went 3-and-out, punting back to Battle Mountain just seventy-three seconds later. Interference with Walter’s fair catch moved the Huskies to midfield with two minutes left in the game.

Three Goldberg passes fell incomplete, the last nearly picked by Olson, and Morrow’s 4th-and-10 sweep was contained by Richards, giving Glenwood the ball with 1:47 to go. Former starter AJ Crowley returned to QB, running for two first downs and 25 yards in four carries before kneeling down in the victory formation.

Those 25 yards on the last possession provided more than half of Glenwood’s total of 41 on the ground, but Steen passed for 181 yards, completing 14-of-22. Rodriguez had 4 catches for 68 yards and Olson netted 43 yards on 4 receptions. Goldberg was 8-for-23, also for 181 yards, and ran 18 times for 80. Morrow led all runners with 86 yards on 11 carries. The Huskies (2-5, 0-2 WSL) piled up 19 first downs to Glenwood’s 9, and outgained the Demons 360 net yards to 222, but offset that with ten fumbles and five turnovers, along with 100 yards on 12 penalties.

The win moves Glenwood (4-3, 1-1) into a third place tie, which should be broken when the Demons travel to next Friday’s Western Slope League opponent, Summit (3-4, 1-1).