Barbara Lawlor, Gilpin County. In their first home outing of the season, the Gilpin High School Eagles lost to the Merino Rams, 35-28. The Rams now have a 2-0 record, the Eagles have a 0-1 record.
It was a fine day for football.
The game was played on Saturday, Sept. 2, at Gilpin High School under a scorching hot sun with a smoky haze from wildfires hazing the foothills down below.
At halftime, the Rams were ahead 35-8, but the Eagles settled down, worked out some kinks and dominated in the second half, scoring 20 points to Merino’s nothing.
The Rams began their march from the 50-yard line, picking up a couple of first downs until they were in a first and goal position. Gilpin’s Angel Gomez stopped runners that were touchdown bound until they finally pushed their way in for the score. Gomez then blocked the Rams’ attempt for a two-point conversion.
In their next possession, Merino rammed their way to the end zone and made the conversion and the score was 14-0, with Gilpin falling behind.
The Eagles were halted after two runs in their next series and then the ball was turned over to the Rams when they recovered an Eagle fumble.
It was good for another Merino touchdown and with three minutes on the clock, the Rams were ahead, 21-0.
Gilpin was having a hard time getting anything to work for them. When the Rams kicked off, Eagle Manny Gomez returned the ball to the 50-yard line but a fumble gave it back to Merino and once again, the Rams drove to the end zone. With one minute on the clock, the score was 27-0.
A few minutes into the second quarter, Merino intercepted a pass, but a play later, the Eagles recovered a Ram fumble in Merino territory and Austin Boulter ran it in for a touchdown and an extra point.
Before the end of the half, the Rams scored again, running the ball into the end zone, and the score was 35-8.
In the beginning of the third quarter, Eagle Stephen King ran the kickoff back to the Merino 15 yard line, a 65-yard return, and Boulter took it into the end zone for a touchdown, 35-14. Hope stirred among the Eagle fans. Gilpin held Merino in the next series and the Eagles began their crusade for a score but were stopped on the 50. It was Merino’s turn to head downfield, all the way to the one-yard line. but that’s as far as they got.
At the beginning of the fourth quarter, the Eagles were backed up against their own end zone, but Boulter ran the ball back to the 29-yard line.
It was the beginning of a push to put Gilpin on the six yardline where Boulder saw his opening and scored. With seven minutes to go, the score was 35-20. Anything could happen and it almost did. Eagle Jack Ball made an interception as the Rams moved deep into Gilpin territory. They kept moving, eating up the clock until Boulter, in the last minute of the game, scored again and made the conversion, making it a seven-point loss, but showing they could change the game.
Josh Trujillo was named the Defensive Player of the Game; Austin Boulter was the Overall and Offensive Player of the Game and Manny Gomez was the Special Teams Player of the Game.
0-27 8-8 6-0 14-0
Passing: Austin Boulter, Sr. completed 1 pass for 19 yards.
Rushing: Jack Ball, Sr. carried 11 times for 46 yards; Stephen King carried three times for 4 yards; Austin Boulter, Sr. carried 28 times for 212 yards and four touchdowns; Angel Gomez, Jr. carried three times for 17 yards; Manny Gomez, Sr. carried four times for 21 yards; Josh Trujillo, Sr. carried once for one yard
Receiving: John Immordino, Sr. had one reception for 19 yards.
Tackles: Jack Ball, 4 solo, 2 assists; Stephen King, Fr. 1 solo, w assists; Austin Boulter, Sr. 4 slot, 3 assists; Blake Boulter, Fr, 1 solo; Angel Gomez, Jr. 7 solo, 6 assists; Jake Duncan, Jr. 3 solo, 4 assists; Manny Gomez, Sr. 4 solos, 5 assists; Josh Trujillo, sr. 18 solos, 3 assists; Tristan Froio, Sr. 2 solo, 1 assist; Nolan Lindberg, Fr. 2 solo, 2 assists; J. Alexander, So. 1 solo.
Interceptions: Jack Ball had one interception: one fumble recovery; Jake Trujillo caused one fumble.
Kickoffs: Manny Gomez, Sr. had four kickoffs fro 177 yards; Nolan Lindberg, Fr. had one kickoff for 35 yards.
Kickoff returns: Stephen King, Fr. had one return for 65 yards; Manny Gomez, Sr. had four returns for 91 yards.
Austin Boulter scored four rushing touchdowns and made two conversions.
(Originally published in the September 7, 2017 print edition of The Mountain-Ear.)