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BoCoPreps’ defining fall moments, Part II

Mead’s out by COVID-19, Holy Family’s long run part of highs and lows

Smoke from the Cameron Peak and ...
Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer
Smoke from the Cameron Peak and and East Troublesome Fire is seen in the lights as Fairview High School and Rocky Mountain High School warms up before the game at Recht Field in Boulder on Oct. 16, 2020.
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Mead football didn’t get to settle its season on the field this fall.

A day after officially getting into the postseason, coach Jason Klatt had to tell his team over video call they were out due to exposure to COVID-19 inside the program. He reaffirmed the program’s message of building strong character. Said he knew they’d bounce back. But this was hard.

This was the reality of high school athletics in 2020.

As the COVID-19 pandemic raged on through the fall months, the four high school sports approved to play in Colorado at the beginning of the season trudged forward and finished. Football then screamed onto the scene late with an expected conclusion at this weekend’s championships in Pueblo.

For Part II of this series, let’s take a look at defining moments that dictated the area’s high school athletics landscape.

We’ll continue in the opening days of October, starting with the season’s busiest week as all of the state golf tournaments, the entire softball postseason and Week 1 of the football season were compacted into a six-day stretch.

Oct. 6 — Frederick’s Jake Chesler leads all area golfers on final day at state golf

Chesler finished fourth at the Class 4A state golf tournament in Colorado Springs, his third straight year inside the state’s top 10. Monarch’s Caleb Michaels led area golfers at the 5A tournament in Golden with a 17th-place finish and Prospect Ridge’s Jason Arbuckle led 3A in Gunnison in 21st. Other top-30 finishers included Centaurus’ Ryan Vaver (16th), Silver Creek’s Ben Harding (18th) and Longmont’s Adam Gannon (28th) in 4A, as well as Holy Family’s Jackson Grace (28th) in 3A.

Boys golf: Frederick’s Jake Chesler climbs up leaderboard, ties for fourth

 

Oct. 8 — Lyons softball’s best season in 18 years finally ends

Sophomore Brooklyn Enny’s 2020 batting average is more believable as a quarterback’s completion percentage. She went 38-for-62 in the fall — not to mention she had nearly double the runs batted in (43) as outs made (24). As a team, the Lions — led by former player Julie Vasquez — hit well, pitched well, and reached the state quarterfinal for the first time since 2002. They were eventually ousted by Brush.

Softball: Lyons’ best season in years finally ends

 

Oct. 8 — Mead softball reaches semifinals, and so does Holy Family

Slugger Claire Adams drove in four runs, stud pitcher Joslynn Veltien tossed a two-hitter and Mead beat Riverdale Ridge to reach its first semifinal in program history. Spoiler: The Mavs’ first finals appearance wasn’t far behind. Meanwhile, Holy Family outdueled Silver Creek for a second time in less than a week to punch its ticket. Both programs went on to meet in the finals and each of them had three players make the BoCoPreps.com all-region team, tied with Broomfield for the most of any program.

Softball: 2020 BoCoPreps.com all-region team

 

Oct. 9 — Broomfield softball’s quarterfinal game goes a second day, but road finally ends

Before light ran out the day before, the Eagles rallied in the seventh inning of their quarterfinal against Cherokee Trail. Down 5-4, 5A Front Range League player of the year Hadlee Reichert reached and stole second. Third baseman Chloe Eiguren then brought her in with a ground-rule double to tie the game. The Cougars eventually won in nine innings, putting a halt on an impressive 16-2 season for the Eagles.

Softball: Broomfield ties game late, will conclude quarterfinal vs Cherokee Trail on Friday

Oct. 9 — Skyline’s Logan Miller puts on a show during football’s opening weekend

Limited fans. Virtual coin tosses. Coaches trying to holler through masks. None of the sport’s newly implemented safety measures could distract from Skyline, or Miller, on this night. The sophomore, in first full-time varsity action, had four touchdowns four different ways as the Falcons pulled away early in the second half to beat Silver Creek. Skyline — led by a powerhouse offense captained by quarterback Chase Silva and running back Grayden Bridwell — ended up going 5-1, but the state’s ranking calculations left the Falcons out of the postseason despite their lone loss coming by a single point in overtime to now 4A-finalist Loveland.

Football: Logan Miller leads Skyline past Silver Creek in Week 1

 

Oct. 10 — Holy Family softball beats the Mavs for second state title in three years

Holy Family catcher Abby Edwards, who is committed to Boise State via her Twitter, set the tone with a first-inning grand slam en route to a 9-6 victory. Not too shabby of an ending for the Tigers or their first-year coach Moriah Nguyen. And not to be overlooked is Mead, the very first program from the modern MHS to make a championship game.

Softball: Holy Family climbs to the top once again, defeats Mead in Class 4A state title game

 

Oct. 17 — Niwot boys and girls defend 4A cross country titles

The team title mattered the most according to Cougars junior Zane Bergen, who also won the 4A boys’ race in Colorado Springs. Both sets of hardware came with a price. Bergen was victorious after the lead runner was disqualified for impeding and causing Bergen to tumble in the final meters. Even so, the junior picked himself up and finished in a time of 15 minutes, 29.5 seconds, which trumped former teammate Cruz Culpepper’s 4A course record. Meanwhile, freshman Mia Prok was individual runner-up as the Niwot girls also claimed the top prize. Prok was three seconds off the leader. Other top-10 finishers for Niwot included Grayden Rauba (fourth) and Curtis Volf (seventh) on the boys’ side and Madison Shults (ninth) with the girls. Elsewhere, Fairview’s Henry Murphy, Boulder’s Lukas Haug, Broomfield’s James Thomas and Legacy’s Ryan Montera went 4-5-6-7 in the 5A boys’ race; Centaurus’ James Overberg was fifth and Mead’s Keegan Caldwell was ninth in 4A boys; Holy Family’s Jack Culp was 10th in 3A boys and Peak to Peak’s Allison Beasley was third in 3A girls; and in 2A, Lyons’ Quin Gregg and Hannah Thomas went eight and nine in the girls’ race, while teammate Cole Thomas was seventh in boys.

Cross country: Niwot’s Zane Bergen nails down individual title, Cougars teams sweep 4A

 

Oct. 30 — Fairview’s defense shines late in win over Legacy

Legacy running back Braelon Tate was spectacular against the state’s stingiest defense through three weeks, running for 138 yards and three scores. But the Knights, who’d given up just seven points coming in, asserted their will late on the back of three straight interceptions. Overall, Fairview was a blast through the crunched season. Its usual pass-friendly offense was primetime, high-scoring, and its breakout star Liam O’Brien was phenomenal with 23 touchdowns to just one pick. Its defense was assaulting, led by Kansas State commit Brayden Wood, who had 10 tackles for loss, seven hurries and a pair of sacks. Jay Barry, a transfer from Denver East, added five interceptions and a fumble recovery for a unit that finished with 19 takeaways in seven games. The Knights eventually fell to Legend in the first round of the 5A postseason.

Football: Fairview escapes Legacy for pivotal 5A North League win

 

Nov. 5 — Broomfield’s Matthew Eich drills game-winning kick in overtime to propel Eagles into strong postseason position

Eich. Eichy. Icy. The senior kicker was sent onto the field for Broomfield’s first offensive play in overtime with a chance to end things and split the uprights from 27 yards out. The kick sent the Eagles to the postseason and sent Windsor out. In the fall, Broomfield played well late in games but hit a fourth-quarter hiccup in an opening-round loss to Loveland.

Football: Broomfield remains undefeated as Eich kicks OT winner

 

 

Nov. 13 — Mead clinches postseason berth with win over Frederick

Gavin Garrettson was fantastic in Mead’s regular-season finale, ensuring the Mavs’ postseason spot. He threw for three touchdowns and finished with 11 scores through the air and three on the ground. With him leading a balanced attack, and with a defense that had two shutouts and five games holding opponents to two scores or less, the Mavs looked like prime contenders in the 3A field. But …

Football: Mead finishes regular season strong with win over Frederick

 

Nov. 16 — Mead out of postseason due to COVID-19 exposure

Football games were canceled right and left throughout the season. Mead’s exposure added to it, albeit brutal timing. The Mavs were expected to face Pueblo South in the first round of the 3A playoffs but had to forfeit their postseason run.

Football: Mead out of postseason due to exposure to COVID-19

 

Nov. 20 — Holy Family into semifinals following lopsided win over Evergreen

The Tigers obliterated everyone during the regular season, then smooshed Evergreen in the opening round of the 3A playoffs. This fall, Michael White threw for 1,314 yards and 18 touchdowns and Trevin Johnson rushed for 907 yards and 12 scores. Justin Trostel had three interceptions and a fumble recovery for a defense that had 21 takeaways.

Football: Holy Family blitzes Evergreen in 3A first round playoff

 

Nov. 28 — Last-team-standing Holy Family bows out in semifinals

Holy Family’s tantalizing year ended against Durango, which will play Roosevelt for the 3A title this weekend. For the first time all season, Holy Family’s offense and defense took a hit, allowing 34 points while not scoring until late in the third quarter.

Football: Durango knocks Holy Family out of 3A playoffs