LAFAYETTE — There is an aura about this 2017 Monarch football team.
It's been building for the last year and half.
On Thursday night at Spangenberg Field against a Broomfield team that took the Coyotes to task last year in a 28-10 victory, coach Phil Bravo's team looked every bit the legitimate contender.
In classic Monarch form, the Coyotes won the line-of-scrimmage, shortened the contest with the power running game and were stingy on defense in a 24-14 nonleague victory over the Eagles.
"This is a coaches dream come true," said Bravo of his team that improved to 5-0 and will host undefeated Skyline next week back at Centaurus.
After a scoreless first quarter, Monarch seized control in the second with two time consuming drives that culminated in short touchdown runs from Justin Kiss and Ernesto Chavez from 2 and 1 yards respectively.
It felt like an insurmountable lead for an Eagles offense, that struggled to find any rhythm, to overcome.
The best the Eagles looked all night was on the final drive of the first half, when quarterback Steven Croell ran the two-minute offense to perfection. The Eagles cut the Monarch lead in half on a Samuel Godwin 9-yard scoring run.
The Eagles defense, and notably linebacker Drew Worthley, played well against the Monarch run-game that they new was going to pound them all night and kept things tight going to the fourth quarter.
"We've got to stop giving them free first downs because of the lack of discipline and we had them in second and long, third and long; and that lack of discipline hurt us," said Broomfield coach Blair Hubbard, whose team dropped to 2-3. "It's what we are doing to ourselves right now, and we need to clean that up."
With under seven minutes to play and coming off a missed Tyler Lanphear 26-yard field goal, the Eagles looked primed to drive for the go-ahead score. But on the second play after the miss, Croell fumbled the snap and the Coyotes offense took over at the 10-yard line.
"(Bravo) has been doing it long enough, you just have to buy into the system ... good defense and running the ball," said Monarch senior defensive back Landon Sibley, who has noticed the vibe of his team improve as the season has progressed. "Since our sophomore year (a 2-8 season) we've been trying to turn this team around and last years seniors started the process. We are trying to finish it; we are just trying to keep it going, because it's fun when you are winning."
Lanphear redeemed himself with a 35-yard field goal that stretched the lead to 17-7 with 4:37 to play.
Broomfield responded with a Matthew Foster 14-yard run, but the Eagles couldn't get that one last stop and Monarch's Kiss found one hole and went in from 49 yards out to put a dagger in the hearts of the Eagles.
"Anytime you play Broomfield, you don't need to circle it, they have such a fine reputation for being a quality program," Bravo said. "You know when you play the, you better bring your 'A' game, or you're going to get killed.
"I think everybody in the back of their mind had this as a keynote game for us."
MONARCH 24, BROOMFIELD 14
At Spangenberg FieldBroomfield (2-3)0707—14
Monarch — Justin Kiss 2 run (Tyler Lanphear kick).
Monarch — Ernesto Chavez 1 run (Lanphear kick).
Broomfield — Samuel Godwin 9 run (Matthew Eich kick).
Monarch — FG Lanphear 35.
Broomfield — Matthew Foster 14 run (Eich kick).
Monarch — Kiss 49 run (Lanphear kick).
RUSHING — Broomfield: Matthew Foster 4-45, Mitchell Gorman 9-32, Tanner Garner 5-25, Samuel Godwin 1-9, Steven Croell 4-(minus-17). Monarch: Justin Kiss 14-82, Max Laychak 13-50, Ernesto Chavez 10-24, Cole Polluconi 6-15, CJ Schmanski 8-15.
PASSING — Broomfield: Croell 10-23-1-114. Monarch: Schmanski 6-11-0-76.
RECEIVING — Broomfield: Matthew Foster 3-48, Grant Swenson 3-31, Hunter Nassar 2-19, Garner 1-13, Dylan Torres 1-3. Monarch: Brenden Christensen 3-55, Ben Cole 2-9, Max Ryterski 1-12.