BOULDER — There were so many points scored and penalties committed in the first quarter between Fairview and Lakewood on Friday night that it seemed everyone at Recht Field was going to miss curfew on homecoming night.
The non-league football shootout took a turn for the swift after that. Unfortunately for the host Knights, it was the Lakewood Tigers doing the dancing.
Lakewood changed the pace of the game in the second quarter with its power rushing attack and pulled away from there for a 51-29 upset of the Knights, who’d cracked the Denver Post coaches and media poll at No. 10 this week.
The loss dropped Fairview to 3-1 heading into North Metro League play, which the Knights begin on the road at Ralston Valley next week.
One week after falling 48-28 to No. 1 Pomona, Lakewood — last year’s Class 5A state runner-up — rebounded to improve to 3-1.
Down 31-21 after halftime, the Knights tried to rally, pulling to within 37-29 early in the third quarter. But Fairview had trouble stopping Lakewood’s rushing attack all night, and the Knights failed to take advantage of the two third-quarter stops they did make while the game was still close.
“It’s pretty rough,” said Fairview’s Cole Scheifele, who caught nine passes for 142 yards and a TD. “We played a very good football team tonight. But clearly we didn’t play our best football. So hopefully we can bounce back.”
Sean Pinson rushed for 190 yards and three touchdowns, and quarterback Connor Leedholm rushed for 148 yards and two scores to power the Tigers.
Fairview quarterback Johnny Feauto continued piling up big numbers, throwing for 426 yards and four touchdowns. But he also threw four interceptions, including two in the second half as the Knights tried to rally.
Feauto has now thrown for 1,588 yards and 15 touchdowns. He’s also thrown 12 interceptions, a point that was easy to overlook when the Knights were winning big the first three weeks.
Fairview also hurt itself with penalties, committing 12 for 95 yards.
A Pinson touchdown early in the fourth quarter made it 44-29, and the Tigers struck again three minutes later after a Feauto interception to seal the victory.
“We knew going in that we wanted to play turnover free and penalty free,” Fairview coach Tom McCartney said. “We’ve got to be more consistent than what we’ve been. We’ve turned it over the last few weeks, and tonight it caught up to us.”
The first quarter — a 52-minute marathon — was one to remember.
The two teams combined for 286 yards of offense, but it felt like more than that thanks to some big kick returns and quick scores.
After both teams scored on 3-minute opening drives, Feauto hit Scheifele for an 80-yard touchdown pass that made it 14-7 on the first play of the Knights’ second drive. Lakewood returned the ensuing onside kick, though, to the Fairview 11-yard line, and one play later Pinson was in the end zone to tie it again.
Lakewood finally struck one for the defenses when linebacker Derek Landis halted a nine-play Fairview drive by returning an interception 80 yards for a touchdown.
But a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after the play backed Lakewood up on the ensuing kickoff, and Cameron Frazier returned it 49 yards to the Lakewood 29. Two plays later, the Knights knotted the score again when Feauto hit Frazier from 24 yards out to make it 21-21 with 2:18 left in the first frame.
As crazy as the first quarter was, however, Lakewood slowed the flow in the second.
Taking over with 11:08 before halftime after an FHS punt, the Tigers marched 65 yards in 11 plays, chewing up more than 5 minutes with their option rushing attack.
Another Feauto interception on Fairview’s next possession led to a Lakewood field goal that made it 31-21 with 2:26 to go before halftime.
In all, the Tigers possessed the ball for 9:03 of the second quarter as Fairview failed to get its offense moving.
“They made some changes after the first quarter defensively,” McCartney said, noting that Lakewood started taking away the deep routes and forcing Fairview to sustain drives with short passes. “We could have done a better job of our execution.”
Running backs Pinson and Taz Arguello had entered the game with about equal carries, with the latter owning the yardage edge. But it was Pinson who carried most of the load, amassing 118 yards on 16 totes in the first half as Lakewood took control.
“It feels so good,” Leedholm said. “Just all-around good performance by everybody. We never quit pushing.”
Feauto hit 5 of 8 passes on Fairview’s opening drive, capping it with a 4-yard strike to Sam Martin to make it 7-0 less than 3 minutes into the game to start the scoring onslaught.
The only thing that really stopped Fairview’s offense in the first half were self inflicted wounds. There were the two interceptions. And, after Fairview had forced a punt and took over possession with the game tied at 21 late in the first quarter, two snaps over the head of Feauto led to the Knights’ first punt and Lakewood’s dominance of possession in the second quarter.
Martin finished with 11 catches for 138 yards and two scores to help lead Fairview’s receiving corps along with Scheifele. Frazier caught six passes for 92 yards.
“We give Lakewood credit,” McCartney said. “We were prepared, but they won.”
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LAKEWOOD 51, FAIRVIEW 29
At Recht Field
Lakewood (3-1) 21 10 6 14 — 51
Fairview (3-1) 21 0 8 0 — 29
Fairview — Sam Martin 4 pass from Johnny Feauto (Patrick Rios kick).
Lakewood — Connor Leedholm 27 run (Ari Efaw kick).
Fairview — Cole Scheifele 80 pass from Feauto (Rios kick).
Lakewood — Sean Pinson 11 run (Reid Sangster kick).
Lakewood — Derek Landis 80 interception return (Nick O’Dell kick).
Fairview — Cameron Frazier 24 pass from Feauto (Rios kick).
Lakewood — Pinson 10 run (Efaw kick).
Lakewood — Sangster 19 field goal.
Lakewood — Leedholm 69 run (kick blocked).
Fairview — Martin 17 pass from Feauto (Frazier pass from Feauto).
Lakewood — Pinson 3 run (O’Dell kick).
Lakewood — Taz Arguello 1 run (Sangster kick).
First downs 16 23
Rushes-yards 49-385 10-16
Passing yards 11 426
Comp-Att-Int 1-7-1 34-66-4
Fumbles-Lost 2-1 4-0
Penalties-Yards 10-90 12-95
RUSHING — Lakewood: Pinson 25-190, Leedholm 11-148, Arguello 7-35, Valdez 2-9, O’Dell 2-3, Castillo 1-0; Fairview: Sharr 4-33, Feauto 4-(-23), Hoskins 1-2, Scheifele 1-4.
PASSING (comp-att-int-yards) — Lakewood: Leedholm 1-7-1-11; Fairview: Feauto 34-66-4-426.
RECEIVING — Lakewood: Landis 1-11; Fairview: Martin 11-138, Scheifele 9-142, Frazier 6-92, Sharr 5-28, Harris 3-26.