Even though teams in Class 3A football finally join in with other classes to compete in league contests, the feature attraction on tap this week involves one more non-conference battle.  It pits Mead on the road to Roosevelt as both teams enter unbeaten and unchallenged.


There are plenty of playoff implications as you would expect.  Roosevelt is ranked number one by the coaches again this week and Mead has moved up to second.  More importantly, the Riders are third in RPI with the Mavericks fourth.  They trail Fort Morgan and Lutheran in those standings.

Both teams have dominant to say the least.  Mead has not allowed any opponent more than eight points and through four games have outscored teams 176-16.  Roosevelt’s numbers are even more impressive.  They’ve not allowed a single point since giving up seven in an opening loss to Holy Family.  In five games, they’ve tallied 244 points and surrendered only seven.

The Riders defense is forcing over three turnovers per game (16 on the season) with Tucker Peterson picking off three passes and recovering one fumble.  Peterson is also heavily involved on offense as he’s caught 18 passes including seven TDs.  Brock Saya has tossed 14 TDs overall on just 47 completions and totaled 841 yards for the season.  Keaton Kaiser has 19 catches with three scores.

The running game is also very capable as Xavier Ramirez (329) and Ryan Doucette (323) are both over 300 yards and have combined for seven touchdowns.

Mead’s defense has created 10 turnovers in four games.  They also have 14 sacks including 3.5 from Stefan Riepler.  Jeremiah Strizki, with 32, is the top tackler.

The Mavericks are also explosive on offense.  Gavin Garrettson has completed 28 passes with 11 reaching the end zone.  Four have gone to Sean Medlock and three others to Corby Tecu.  Tecu has also generated 231 yards rushing which is second on the Mavericks; Evan Morris tops that chart with 380.

A second matchup of unbeaten clubs is found inside the North Central 1 where Lutheran (5-0) goes to Evergreen (5-0).  We mentioned Lutheran is #2 in RPI and Evergreen is 8th so both teams are fighting to host a first round playoff game.  The winner also gains the inside track to the league title as they enter conference action as the only two league members above 500 for the season.

The numbers for both clubs are very similar.  Each has beaten just one team with a winning record at this point of the season.  Lutheran’s win over Denver North (48-14) came in week two while Evergreen is coming off a win over George Washington (41-23).  Both clubs also want to run as many plays as possible on offense and through five games, Lutheran has 265 snaps and Evergreen 280.

Evergreen’s number are equally split with 140 pass attempts and 140 running plays.  Tommy Poholsky directs the attack and needs just 34 yards to reach 1,000 passing for the season.  He’s thrown 11 TDs.  12 players have caught at least one pass; Jacob Rutherford has three scores and Sam Grimshaw and Jordan Turnbull two apiece.  On the ground, it’s the Gabe Zimmerer show with 559 yards and 10 TDs.

Lutheran QB Clayton Jacobs sits at 918 yards and 13 TDs.  He’s connected 16 different players on completions.  Ryan Allen has four TD catches; Joe Ciccio and Bryce Johnson each have three.  Running attempts are split nicely between Ryan Kenny (403) and Dorian Pachecho (396) who have combined for 799 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Both clubs also feature big play defenses.  Lutheran has 15 sacks and nine turnovers including five interceptions.  Evergreen has fewer sacks (8) but more turnovers (11) with eight of those coming through interceptions.

The key game inside the Southern 2 race is between Pueblo East (2-3) and Pueblo County (3-2).  The winner could easily end up with a top two finish at years end and may be the top challenger to league favorite Pueblo South.  The Colts are not in action this week as they’re game with Canon City will not be played.  The TIgers are sitting out a second straight game due to a self imposed suspension.

East is facing their first 3A opponent of the season.  All five of their non-league games were against 4A opponents and all five could be against future playoff teams.  Palmer Ridge and Erie are locks for post-season bids while Mesa Ridge, Pueblo West and Cheyenne Mountain could also get there.

County has won their last two; beating Lamar 44-0 and Harrison 21-7.  Their third win is against La Junta with losses coming to powerful Roosevelt and Pueblo West.

The Hornets may try to control the game with their running game which averages 216 yards per game.  Cody Lanier is the first option; he’s rushed for 558 yards and four touchdowns.

East has struggled to move the football this year as they’ve yet to crack 1,000 yard for the season while averaging just 187 per game.  The defense is improving as they held high scoring Cheyenne Mountain to just ten points.

As mentioned, both teams have already met city rival Pueblo West and neither fared that well.  County lost 48-0 and East 31-0.

Palisade has dominated the Western Slope race of late but when we spoke with Bulldogs head coach Joe Ramunno in the preseason, he told us the league was better was across the board.  And he was correct.  Entering league play this week, five of the six teams are above five hundred so there are several clubs that want to push Palisade for the crown.

There are two games of note this week; Steamboat Springs (4-1) goes to Eagle Valley (3-1) and Glenwood Springs (3-2) heads to Summit (3-2).  Both are considered toss-ups.

There are some question marks for Steamboat Springs.  Eagle Valley represents their first 3A opponent of the season as all five previous games were against 2A clubs.  They fell to Moffat County (50-0) but picked up wins over Valley, Middle Park, Coal Ridge and Aspen.  The win over Aspen may be the best of the bunch as the Skiers took out Rifle last week.

Eagle Valley looks to bounce back from the 42-16 loss to Frederick.  They allowed 365 yards rushing and over 100 yards through the air.  Steamboat will look to move the football against that group with Jake Hamric (813 yards passing) and Brady Grove (292 rushing).

Summit looks to snap a seven-game losing streak to Glenwood Springs.  They almost ended the streak last year but came up short in an exciting 36-30 loss.

Glenwood did not play well in last week’s 42-0 shutout loss to top ranked Roosevelt.  The Demons surrendered many huge plays and 306 yards overall so they’ll look to clean up that side of the ball before meeting Summit.  Jack Schierholz paces Summit with 851 yards and nine TDs passing.  His job is to get the ball to Aidan Collins who has five touchdowns and 471 yards receiving.  He’s also a tremendous defender with a team high 38 tackles, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries.

Denver North and George Washington (both 3-2) have the best records inside the Denver Prep league.  Thomas Jefferson (2-3) is also a solid club so those three clubs should battle for the crown.  None of the three meet up this week with the best conference matchup pitting Thomas Jefferson against Kennedy (2-3).

In the North Central 2, the title should come down to the late season battle between Frederick and Mead.  Both are 4-0.  Holy Family will be a tough out as the Tigers are 2-2 against a strong schedule.  Frederick this week heads to Skyview as the Warriors look to continue their strong play from the Eagle Valley win.  Holy Family heads up to Thompson Valley with the Eagles coming off a good win over city rival Mountain View.

Mountain View (2-3) is the only team inside the North Central 3 league under 500.  Roosevelt and Fort Morgan are both unbeaten with Northridge 4-1 and Niwot 3-2.  Fort Morgan comes off a bye to meet Niwot as the Cougars look to spring the major upset.  Mountain View is the underdog when they take the very short drive over Northridge.

Sand Creek and Durango (3-2) have the best records to start the Southern 1 schedule.  Toss in Discovery Canyon (2-3) and you could have a three team race.  The remaining three teams are 0-14 this season.

The best pairing this week features Sand Creek against Discovery Canyon.  DC and Durango tangle next week (15th) so the Thunder may now their playoff future over the next 10 days.