• Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer

    Longmont's Drake Engelking tries to break the tackle of Windsor's Darren Peeples during Thursday's game. Go to for more photos.

  • Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer

    Longmont's Cruz Garcia looks to get to the outside during Thursday's game with visiting Windsor. Go to for more photos.

  • Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer

    Longmont's Oakley Dehning throws downfield during Thursday's game with visiting Windsor. Go to for more photos.



LONGMONT — Apparently, the more things change, the more they stay the same for the Longmont and Windsor football teams.

Even though they had not played each other since 2015, the most recent games between the Trojans and Wizards were nail-biters, defensive tussles where one or two plays made all the difference toward the outcome.

On Thursday night at Everly-Montgomery Field, that trend continued as for the third time in four meetings, a single point on the scoreboard declared victory. And, for Longmont in its huge 18-17 win that kept hopes of a Class 4A playoff spot alive, it was a forced fumble and a gutsy fourth-down conversion that played pivotal roles.

Trailing 17-12 with seven minutes to go, Jordan Gallegos’s forced fumble on Windsor quarterback Chase Lanckreit was recovered by fellow senior Telvin Townsend, and the Trojans offense managed a slow march for 54 yards that Drake Engelking made sure was going to pave the way for LHS’ fifth win of 2018.

Engelking punched in his second touchdown of the fourth quarter from 8 yards out, this on a fourth-down-and-inches play where all the chips were on the table. Windsor got the ball back but managed only one more first down as the Trojans defense made its own final push.

“The comeback meant a lot, because we don’t want our senior season to end early and we just came out and did a job and believed in each other,” Townsend said of the win, which evened Longmont’s Northern League mark at 1-1 (they are 5-2 overall). “We just had to go in the locker room and make a few changes on the line. We knew we couldn’t take any losses on our home field, and the boys lived up to the moment.”

“We played about as well as you could play there for a couple of drives,” Longmont coach Doug Johnson said, “and when we really needed it, (the coaches) challenged our offense on the sideline … and our defense was lights out in the second half.”

Townsend was all over the field Thursday, and though Windsor does not have any sort of serviceable pass attack to speak of, the Trojans had a tough time on occasion defending the run.

Windsor’s Isaiah Salazar opened the third quarter with a 58-yard scoring run, and with it the Wizards (2-5, 0-2) opened up a 17-6 lead on an LHS team that sat No. 12 in the 4A RPI. That was the fifth rush of 20 or more yards in the first 26 minutes for WHS.

Windsor would finish with 281 rushing yards, but Longmont allowed just two runs of more than 10 yards after that play.

“Our coaches believe in us, and we just made some adjustments to the line and to the backers to make sure that triple-option didn’t hurt us no more,” Townsend said. “I saw that ball (on the fumble) and just thought, that’s game right there, so I grabbed it.”

Still, it also took the offense to get going late, and they were more than able to with time-consuming scoring drives. A good LHS drive (79 yards in 11 plays) late in the third quarter and into the fourth frame got them to within five points as Engelking converted another fourth-down play along the way and eventually scored on a 9-yard run to make it 17-12 with 10:01 left.

The drive that followed the fumble recovery consumed 5 minutes and took 10 plays.

Engelking finished with 173 total yards (145 rushing 28 receiving) to lead the way. Oakley Dehning threw one touchdown pass, that coming on a backyard-style play to Sage Yazzie early in the second quarter off a high snap on a field goal attempt.

“That field position never hurts, does it?,” Johnson said. “We have talked about having to win three games in conference to guarantee ourselves to get in. We still have some tough guys ahead, but no doubt this was a must-win.”

Longmont hosts Brighton next Friday night.

Adam Dunivan: or

Longmont 18, Windsor 17

At Everly-Montgomery Field

Windsor (2-5, 0-2)01070—17Longmont (5-2, 1-1)06012—18

Second quarter

Longmont — Sage Yazzie 16 pass from Oakley Dehning (run failed). Windsor — Zach Fendley 27 field goal. Windsor — Noah Montague 26 run (Fendley kick).

Third quarter

Windsor — Isaiah Salazar 58 run (Fendley kick).

Fourth quarter

Longmont — Drake Engelking 9 run (run failed). Longmont — Engelking 8 run (pass failed).


RUSHING — Longmont: Drake Engelking 27-145, Oakley Dehning 8-33, Cruz Garcia 2-10, Beck Fieth 6-23, Sage Yazzie 4-7.

PASSING — Longmont: Dehning 9-17-1-86.

RECEIVING — Longmont: Engelking 4-28, Yazzie 2-24, Fieth 3-34.