LONGMONT - It was tough to watch, let alone take.
At home and in front of a crowd that was as listless as it was concerned, Longmont turned unusually hapless and fell to Fort Morgan 21-0 on Friday night at Everly-Montgomery Field. The battle for runner-up to crosstown-rival Silver Creek in the Class 3A Northern League basically amounted to a one-sided affair.
The Trojans, normally energized and ready to perform in front of an interested following, dropped their second consecutive game and fell to 6-4 overall, 3-2 in league. Fort Morgan improved to 9-1, 4-1.
And here's another quirk - entering the game, Longmont was fifth in the new RPI rankings that will help determine the 16-team playoff field that will be released on Sunday and the Mustangs were seventh.
What's next on that front? It's anyone's guess.
"If you've got a quarter, maybe we can figure it out, flip it three times and we'll see," Mustangs head coach Harrison Chisum joked afterward.
But there was nothing funny about it for Longmont. The Trojans now have scored all of three points in their past eight quarters - they fell 10-3 to Silver Creek last week - as it isn't happening offensively for them.
"Yes, it has been," veteran coach Doug Johnson said in acknowledging his team's offensive problems. "But we're growing up and we'll get there."
Basically, Longmont penalties ruined anything it was trying to accomplish on offense. A glaring example was the Trojans' first possession - they kept the ball for more than 9 minutes into the second quarter, yet six penalties stalled the drive and led to a missed field goal.
And it didn't stop there. Another drive, which made it inside the Fort Morgan 15-yard line, resulted in a lost fumble. Another ended in a blocked punt. There also were punts of 11 and 18 yards. Two others ended in giving it over on downs.
"The penalties killed us and I have to look at the film," said Johnson, who politely indicated he didn't want to get into anything else on the subject.
Meanwhile, the Fort Morgan fronts were able to dominate.
"Both sides did a really good job," Chisum said.
Two of the Mustangs' scores, which were fueled by their front wall and the solid rushing of Tate Kembel, sandwiched a 66-yard touchdown toss to the large and gifted Trey McBride. His catch and run came 3:08 before half and the Trojans were unable to generate any answers.
Afterward, the Trojans left the field quietly with looks of disappointment. Their first season in dropping down to 3A - they were 12-1 and made the 4A semifinals a year ago - has proved challenging, notably on offense. A year ago, they piled up 508 points. Through 10 games, they have 267.
Longmont quarterback Oakley Dehning spent much of the game getting pressured by the Mustangs. He was only able to complete 10 of 21 attempts for 108 yards and the Longmont ground game produced only 128 yards.
"We'll see where we are," Johnson said of his team's next round. "It was tough. We have a good club, but we have to lick our wounds and get back in the saddle. "
Fort Morgan 21, Longmont 0
At Everly Montgomery FieldFort Morgan 0 14 7 0 — 21
Longmont 0 0 0 0 — 0
Fort Morgan — Tate Kembel 7 run (Adam Cardona kick), 8:51.Fort Morgan — Trey McBride 66 pass from Daylin Knapp (Cardona kick), 3:08.
Fort Morgan - Trey McBride 66 pass from Daylin Knapp (Cardona kick), 3:08.
Fort Morgan — Austin Breidenbach 4 run (Cardona kick), 1:36.
RUSHING — Longmont: Cruz Garcia 4-61; Kelvin Townsend 12-26; Oakley Dehning 10-19; Drake Engelking 4-19; Kobe Martin 1-3.
PASSING — Longmont: Dehning 10--21-0-108.
RECEIVING — Longmont: Jayden Elkins 3-27; Hayden Masness 2-37; Will Preuss 1-26; Martin 1-17; Engelking 1-6; Townsend 1-4; Garcia 1-1.