As September comes to an end and the calendar turns to October, football teams start gearing up for the next phase of the regular season. That means league play is taking center stage in Class 1A.
Top teams like Limon, Wray and Monte Vista all dive into league play in Week 6 and if things didn’t feel real before, they certainly will starting now.
(1) Limon at Strasburg (Saturday)
If the Badgers are getting measured by their results against ranked teams, they have to be the team to beat for the remainder of the year. They hit the road and pounded Buena Vista with their running game. The 50-13 win over the Demons was a stark reminder that the best championship culture in the state still belongs on the eastern plains. Gabe Schubarth and Logan Bother combined to rush for over 200 yards and four touchdowns in that win.
Burlington is an interesting team because it has either played all 2A teams or out-of-state teams. The Cougars first test in 1A just happens to come at the hands of Limon.
Holyoke at (2) Wray
The Eagles are outscoring their Colorado opponents by an average of 47.5-0 in 2022. That spells trouble for Holyoke. Chris Arambula, Sam Misener and Brady Collins have been a three-headed monster in the rushing attack and have combined for 475 yards and nine touchdowns this season.
Holyoke is going through some uncharacteristic struggles and lost its first two games of the year. They’ve bounced back in their two most recent games, both of which were against out-of-state teams.
(3) Strasburg at Clear Creek (Thursday)
Strasburg bounced back from its loss to Limon and beat rival Bennett 43-14 in Week 5. It hits the road for its league opener and will try to get off to a fast start by taking down Clear Creek in an early Thursday game. Running back Zach Marrero is rushing for 103 yards per game and has scored five touchdowns this season. He’ll be the focal point to get the team off to a strong start in league play.
(4) Wiggins at (5) Yuma
The Tigers are looking for their third straight win and will likely head into Week 6 relatively healthy after having a bye last week. Julio Flores already has three 100-yard games under his belt and has emerged as one of the top backs in all of 1A. He has totaled 496 rushing yards and seven scores.
Yuma remains undefeated and is also coming off a bye week. Jack Blecha and Silas Baucke are a formidable rushing duo as they combine for over 140 yards per game and have scored six rushing touchdowns between the two of them.
(6) Monte Vista at Del Norte (Thursday)
The Pirates have played well for the entirety of 2022 and have no plans of ending that trend this week week against Del Norte. In last week’s win over Peyton, DeAngelo Archuleta ran for 191 yards and two touchdowns. Khegan Gunter added two rushing touchdowns of his own.
The Tigers started the season 2-0 but have now dropped their last two games and would love to avoid a three-game losing streak.
(7) Meeker at Cedaredge
The Cowboys only loss of the season was to No. 1 Limon and they’ve look impressive beyond that one showing. They’ve scored 41 points in each of their last two outings, both of which were wins. Last week against Roaring Fork, Clay Crawford and Connor Blunt each ran for over 100 yards. Crawford scored two touchdowns adn Blunt had one.
In their three wins this season, the Bruins have outscored their opponents 89-0.
North Fork at (8) Buena Vista
Buena Vista is coming off back-to-back losses and is looking to bounce back against North Fork. The offense got bogged down a bit last week against Limon and the only touchdowns that the Demons scored came on special teams. They totaled just 41 yards on the ground and 95 yards through the air.
The Miners have been somewhat inconsistent this season as they haven’t been able to string wins together in consecutive weeks.
Center at (9) Centauri
The defending 1A champions snapped a two-game losing streak with a win 33-14 win over Bayfield in Week 5. The Falcons face Center in the league opener which will be crucial in getting on the path to another playoff berth.
Roaring Fork at (10) Gunnison
The Cowboys improved to 2-0 in league play with a win over Olathe last week. A third straight win should help them climb in the 1A rankings as each game takes on far more weight for the remainder of the regular season.