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Golter, Samaras and Zeman.

They're not a law firm. And, no, they don't stand for the name of a new television series this fall, although then again they figure to be very relevant into November's sweeps.

They know how to counterpunch and respond, and as far as being explosive? You bet.

And magic-like? The were the main principles in a Houdini outing on Friday night.

Behind Joey Golter, Stone Samaras and Michael Zeman, Holy Family kept up its early season frenetic pace on Friday, ultimately running and passing by thisclose past the Western Slope's Palisade 52-48 in a wild Class 3A nonleague at Mike G. Gabriel Stadium.

Asked if his team does this regularly, coach Mike Gabriel said: "Yeah, every week."

In improving to 2-0, the Tigers put up large numbers and pretty much had to do so the whole game -- they had issues shaking the determined Bulldogs (1-1), who took the lead inside the final minute, only to watch Golter snag his fifth touchdown pass from Samaras with 30.8 ticks to go.

"It was a great way to end it," said Zeman, who ran for 224 yards and three touchdowns.

Fresh from a 40-19 trouncing of Loveland's Mountain View, the Tigers' home opener kept it interesting, running to an assortment of leads, only to have the Bulldogs respond.

The Tigers would go right down the field in just a handful of plays, only to have Palisade answer with its patient ground attack.

"We found out a lot tonight about our character," Gabriel said.


That the Tigers staff did -- and it nearly took a calculator to count the ways.

Samaras, who threw an interception on fourth down at midfield when the Tigers elected to pass on punting and go for the kill -- "We'll punt next time," Gabriel said -- never blinked. All five of his scoring tosses went to Golter and he ended with 459 passing yards.

Golter, who beat double coverage for the winning reception, finished with 12 catches for 260 yards.

In addition to Zeman's thing, the Holy Family defense that frequently was on its heels did make some plays, causing and recovering a fumble early in the fourth quarter and putting up enough of a fight against the superior Palisade offense front that plowed the way for a whopping 517 yards.

All told, Palisade's big backs, Austin Bernal and Isaac Maestas, accounted for 488 of the Bulldogs' rushing yards.

Longtime coach Joe Ramunno acknowledged that his guys were good, "but not good enough. We couldn't cover them and that's a tough deal. But, hey, credit Holy Family ... they've got a great attack. And we've got to get better or we'll have a hard time. We have to make a couple stops there. And we couldn't do it.."

Everyone knows what Holy Family;s going to do.

The trick is top stop the Tigers, which won't be easy.

"So many teams are bigger than we are," Gabriel said.

But not on Friday, as in the classic sense of Colorado's mountain programs vs. its city teams. It's a matchup so relevant to the 3A level.

"It's a great win," Zeman said.

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Holy Family 52, Palisade 48

At Mike G. Gabriel Stadium

Palisade (1-1) 7 13 14 14 — 48

Holy Family (2-0) 12 19 7 14 — 52

First quarter

Holy Family — Golter 14 pass from Samaras (pass fail). Palisade — Bernal 58 run (McLean kick). Holy Family — Zeman 87 run (run fail).

Second quarter

Holy Family — Golter 43 pass from Samaras (pass fail). Palisade — Maestas 12 run (pass fail). Holy Family — Zeman 7 run (Lonardo kick). Palisade — Maestas 44 run (McLean kick). Holy Family — Zeman 31 run (run fail).

Third quarter

Holy Family — Golter 29 pass from Samaras (Lonardo kick). Palisade — Bernal 16 run (Bernal run). Palisade — Riddle 3 run (run fail).

Fourth quarter

Palisade — Bernal 6 run (McLean kick). Holy Family — Golter 7 pass from Samaras (Lonardo kick). Palisade — Bernal 4 run (McLean kick). Holy Family — Golter 39 pass from Samaras (Lonardo kick).


RUSHING — Holy Family: Zeman 22-224, Samaras 8-(minus-10).

PASSING — Holy Family: Samaras 37-23-459-5-1.

RECEIVING — Holy Family: Golter 12-260, Zeman 4-72, Helbig 3-72, Montoya 3-47, Wolfe 1-16, Giron 1-0.