Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer
Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer
LONGMONT — Broomfield and Longmont football both needed to rebound after single-possession losses to now-ranked teams during the first week of the season. Understandably, both came into Friday’s matchup with a chip on their shoulders.
They certainly made it interesting in the final minutes, too.
The Trojans — or, more accurately, Keegan Patterson — entered the contest with a bit more fire than their visitors at Everly-Montgomery Field and, thanks to a big first-half performance from their quarterback, were able to hold off Broomfield’s charge for the 38-29 win.
“It feels really good,” Patterson said. “Last week, we obviously didn’t get the job done (in the 49-43 loss to Chatfield). We felt like we had a lot of chances to win that game and we felt like we got tired and we let off the gas a little bit and we obviously didn’t win that game.”
The Eagles got on the board first with a 29-yard run from senior Blake Naranjo on a fourth-down gamble midway through the first quarter, but Patterson wasn’t keen on letting that stand. The Longmont senior spent the next 20 minutes taking the reins of his team’s offense as he played a role in not one, not two, but three scores, either from his own runs or on a pair of passes, first on a 38-yarder to Jack Moll and then on a 40-yard dagger to Kale Derksen.
Longmont took a 22-7 lead midway through the second frame, and that’s all the Eagles needed to find their spark again.
Broomfield junior running back Kadin Quintana responded on the next possession with a 5-yard run into the end zone to pull within 22-15, but the Trojans took the Eagles to task five minutes later with Derksen’s long TD.
The Trojans held the momentum throughout much of the first half — thanks in part to a big Caleb Johnson interception — but the Eagles managed to shift the tide back in their favor with just 43 seconds left in the first half. Josh Dunn silenced the Longmont crowd when he scored on a 25-yard bullet from junior quarterback Cole LaCrue and somehow managed to stay inbounds.
Longmont led just 29-22 at the half, and it was anybody’s game at that point.
The Eagles nearly carried their spark into the opening minutes of the second half as LaCrue capitalized on an optimal, 48-yard throw to Dunn to put them at Longmont’s 10-yard line. Then disaster struck. Broomfield fumbled the ball on the very next play and the Trojans recovered.
The Trojans didn’t waste their opportunity.
Patterson connected with Johnson for a gargantuan 50-yard play that eventually led to a 26-yard field goal from Cole Gaddis. Longmont took the two-possession lead again at 32-22 with four minutes remaining in the third frame.
“Just building forward this week, we focused on discipline, doing our jobs and finishing every play and I think we did a pretty good job of that tonight,” Patterson said. “I think we can get a lot better. We gave them a score before halftime. That hurt a little bit, but the momentum of everybody doing their jobs helped us out a lot.”
Just as the Trojans looked to have run away with the momentum and, in turn, the game, the Eagle defense pulled out a major stop to deflate their hosts. Longmont’s offense got the ball down within a half-yard of the end zone with nine minutes to go, but that’s as far as Broomfield would let it get.
The Eagle offense didn’t squander the chance that their teammates gave them, and they ate up plenty of clock in the process before LaCrue scored on a 13-yard run to pull within 32-29 with 4:27 to go.
Johnson responded with a 50-yard punt return. The Trojans burned another minute and a half before Patterson scored yet again on a QB sneak, but they left plenty of time for Broomfield to respond. The Eagles, however, couldn’t convert.
The Trojans will look to carry their momentum forward next Friday at Windsor as Broomfield looks to bounce back at Denver South that same evening.