Timothy Hurst/Staff Photographer
LAFAYETTE — The Tristan Langenegger-Tyler Larson connection had one more surge late in Boulder’s comeback charge against Centaurus Thursday night.
The Panthers had been silenced in the second half before the two hooked up for a 41-yard strike in the waning minutes of the fourth quarter, and it set up Declan Culberson’s go-ahead touchdown with 3:19 remaining as Boulder escaped for a 21-17 win at Spangenberg Field.
“I have a very talented receiver here,” Langenegger said as he peered over to his 6-foot-4 wideout. “Every time he made a catch it put a smile on my face.”
None more cheesy than his last.
With time fading, Langenegger found Larson down the seam and the receiver raced upfield before Bryan Serrano tracked him down for a TD-saving tackle. Langenegger followed with a short run and another first-down pass. Culberson replied with three carries, including a 1-yard score to put Boulder ahead for good.
Centaurus’ last-ditch effort looked promising following a kick return that got near midfield. But it stalled.
Quarterback Coleman Teasdale, who had been lethal with his arm and legs throughout the night, saw his fourth-down pass flutter to the ground in the final 80 seconds.
The Panthers knelt for their first win of the season as the Warriors dropped to 0-3.
“They had special players, too,” Boulder coach Craig Van Patten said. “At the end of the game, we just made a few more plays than they did.”
Before that, the narrative had long been dominated by the sparkling performances of Teasdale and Serrano. Teasdale threw for more than 150 yards and ran for another 100. Serrano, playing with the sprint button squeezed down, forced three turnovers.
In the bleeding moments before half, the two had swung momentum and led the Warriors to 11 unanswered points over the final 1:36.
Trailing 14-6, Teasdale used his legs to break off a pair of big runs, and then hooked up with Jack Downing for a 12-yard score. A two-point conversion then tied things.
Boulder looked as if it had an answer the other way but a connection from Langenegger to Larson — this, a 33-yard TD arched between a pair of defenders — was wiped out with a holding penalty.
Two plays later, Serrano gave his QB one more chance with his second interception of the quarter. With 13 seconds on the clock back at their own 45, Teasdale made good on it with a run of 17, a throw of 14 — a defensive holding to help — all setting up Harian Aldama with a 31-yard field goal as time expired.
The duo’s tide remained strong as Boulder’s opening possession of the second half ended near the goal line as Serrano stripped a runner inside the 10.
“Centaurus is a great team and they gave us all we could handle,” Van Patten said.
Langenegger opened the game with a 49-yard scramble, the team’s longest rush of the season, and six plays later he pushed across the goal line on fourth-and-goal from the 1 to put the Panthers on the board.
The senior QB along with his trusty target sparked another scoring drive midway through the second, only the second-most important 41-yard connection of the game to Larson. On it, the big bodied talent streaked down the sideline and positioned himself above a defensive back in tight coverage. He held the catch as he tripped to the ground, losing his helmet in the process.
“They are both dynamic players who worked hard over the offseason,” Van Patten said. “It’s helping us out, obviously.”
The duo connected four times for 104 yards.
Boulder will host Horizon Sept. 17, while Centaurus is at home against Thornton.