LONGMONT -- The Longmont football team made its 10th state playoff appearance in the last 11 years on Friday night.

But after being eliminated in the first round in 2016, the Trojans were determined not to be one-and-done this postseason.

And it was mission accomplished as a 36-12 victory over Skyview at Everly Montgomery Field extended Longmont's 2017 postseason stay into the 3A quarterfinals. It marks the seventh time in the last decade that LHS has at least made it to the state quarters.

"It's a new team and we're a year older and a year hungrier," said junior quarterback Oakley Dehning, who threw for 224 yards on Friday. "We knew we had to have this one.

"This team doesn't have a roof. We've gotten better every single week. We've shown that during our winning streak. We'll just keep hammering away."

Indeed, eighth-seeded Longmont (8-3) takes plenty of momentum into the final 8. The Trojans have now won their last seven games after starting out 1-3, outscoring their opponents 286-91 during the win streak. The bad news is, their quarterfinal opponent could be top-seeded Mead, the last team to beat LHS, winning 38-14 on Sept. 22. Mead hosts Harrison on Saturday afternoon in their state playoff opener.

Whoever wins on Saturday, Longmont will be on the road next weekend.


"We're a completely different team now (than in September)," Dehning noted. "We hit our rough spot, we hit the bottom and now we're bouncing back up. It'll be a good rematch against Mead (if the Mavericks win on Saturday). I think if we play well enough we can beat anyone in the state. We just need to come with our A game. Mead is really good. We're going to have to play our best football to have a chance of beating them."

Skyview’s Corey Musch can’t reach the ball as Longmont’s Anthony Rodriguez covers in the first quarter Friday night at Everly-Montgomery
Skyview's Corey Musch can't reach the ball as Longmont's Anthony Rodriguez covers in the first quarter Friday night at Everly-Montgomery Field. Go to BoCoPreps.com for more photos. (Lewis Geyer / Staff Photographer)

Longmont, winner of the 3A Northern League title, has made two appearances in a state championship game since 2009. And though the Trojans have won five state titles in football, the last came in 1991.

But on Friday, they seemed determined not to see their season end prematurely. Facing an opponent that had pitched shutouts in the last two games and that came into the weekend with 38 sacks and 19 interceptions, Longmont scored five touchdowns. It handed ninth-seeded Skyview just its second loss of the year (9-2).

"We've talked about our past teams and putting something together at the end of the year," longtime LHS coach Doug Johnson said. "Our old team chaplain mailed us some (motivational) stickers and they're not here yet. I said, 'If you want to put them on the helmets, you've got to buy another week.'"

And so the Trojans did.

After Skyview missed a 41-yard field goal attempt on the opening possession of the game, Longmont scored first. The Trojans drove 80 yards in just five plays, capping things off with a 18-yard throw from Dehning to Sage Yazzie.

Dehning went on to toss two more TD passes in the first half -- 17 yards to Danny Nichols and 52 to Jaydon Elkins. Mathew Sprecher helped make it 29-0 at halftime with a 29-yard scoop and score on a fumble return.

Dehning went into intermission with 178 yards passing, with five completions of at least 17 yards.

"I thought he played tremendous," Johnson said of Dehning. "He's been doing this in the streak, and he's been calling a lot of our plays. He's a terrific human being.

"The night of the (Mead loss), one of the things that really helped us is he came into my office and we sat there for about an hour after everybody had left and just talked about what we wanted our team to look like. We burned the midnight oil. I love that kid. He's the type of kid that's the reason why you coach."

The closest Skyview came to scoring before intermission was when it missed field goals of 41 and 35 yards.

Longmont's defense kept the Wolverines off the scoreboard thanks in part to the sixth interception of the year for Nick Paone, Sprecher's fumble recovery and sacks by Jarod Fixmer, Bryan Blanks and Jason Schneider-Rodriguez.

Skyview's first score -- early in the third quarter -- came via special teams as a bad Longmont snap led to a muffed 2-yard punt and a 25-yard punt return for TD by Michael Vigil, the Wolverines QB.

But Longmont got its healthy cushion back with an 82-yard TD drive that concluded early in the fourth quarter.

Complementing Dehning offensively on Friday were 108 yards rushing by Drake Engelking, with 102 of those coming in the second half, and 98 yards receiving and 26 rushing by Elkins. All three players are juniors.

"I love the spirit of our team and how hard we're working," Johnson said. "We're having a lot of fun together too. These kids are loyal. We could have turned on each other, but we didn't."

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Longmont 36, Skyview 12

At Everly-Montgomery Field

Skyview (9-2)0066—12

Longmont (8-3)82107—36

First quarter

Longmont — Sage Yazzie 18 pass from Oakley Dehning (Drake Engelking run).

Second quarter

Longmont — Danny Nichols 17 pass from Dehning (Cruz Garcia kick). Longmont — Jaydon Elkins 52 pass from Dehning (Garcia kick). Longmont — Mathew Sprecher 29 fumble return (Garcia kick).

Third quarter

Skyview — Michael Vigil 25 punt return (run fail).

Fourth quarter

Longmont — Engelking 5 run (Garcia kick). Skyview — Deyvon Butler 12 run (pass fail).


RUSHING — Skyview: Butler 19-76, Gonzalez 5-71, Kemm 1-15, Vaughn 1-11, Vigil 8-(-24). Longmont: Drake Engelking 20-108, Cruz Garcia 5-53, Jaydon Elkins 4-26, Oakley Dehning 8-10, Dylan Stott 1-4, Beck Fieth 1-3, Sage Yazzie 2-(-4).

PASSING — Skyview: Vigil 5-11-1-99. Longmont: Oakley Dehning 8-14-1-224.

RECEIVING — Skyview: Gonzalez 3-88, Butler 1-10, Vaughn 1-1. Longmont: Jaydon Elkins 3-98, Danny Nichols 2-66, Sage Yazzie 2-23, Nick Paone 1-37.