Cowboys continue quest, win 50-0 in first round of playoffs

Play Limon on Saturday at 1 p.m.

The Meeker Cowboys knocked the Cornerstone Christian Academy Bulldogs down and out, 50-0, in the first round of the 2017 1A Colorado State Football Championships last Friday in Starbuck Stadium. The Cowboys will travel to play the Limon Badgers, the most accomplished football program in Colorado history, in the quarterfinals of the state playoffs this Saturday at 1 p.m. Meeker quarterback Logan Hughes (10), is pictured throwing a completion to Stephen Walsh for a big gain. Hughes completed seven of eight passes for 144 yards and two touchdowns and he also rushed for two touchdowns. Bobby Gutierrez photo

MEEKER | The Cowboys will continue their quest to win Meeker’s first-ever football championship, but in order to do so they must next win in the quarterfinals of the 2017 1A Colorado State Football Championships against the Limon Badgers, the most accomplished high school football program in Colorado history.
Meeker shut out the Cornerstone Christian Academy Bulldogs 50-0 in the first round of the 1A state playoffs in front of hometown fans in Starbuck Stadium last Friday, under the lights. The Cowboys will next travel to the eastern plains of Colorado to play the Badgers, who have won more football state championships (17) than any program in the state, including all classifications, most consecutive titles (6), most undefeated seasons (12) and most consecutive wins (50).
“They have quite a history,” Meeker head coach Shane Phelan said of his team’s next opponent.
The Cowboys, who are currently undefeated in 10 games, have played in seven state title games but have never won a championship. They kept their quest alive with a dominating win against the Bulldogs.
“We came out with great effort and enthusiasm from the get-go,” Coach Phelan said. “I was proud of how they performed, it was a good, total team effort.”
The Cowboys received the opening kickoff and scored on their first possession when senior quarterback Logan Hughes ran in from 10 yards out.
Meeker’s defense forced the Bulldogs to punt and junior running back Jorgen Stagg scampered in from 29 yards to put the Cowboys up 12-0 after the first quarter. Senior running back Doak Mantle, who had another 100 yard game (101 on 11 carries), scored from 15 yards out in the second quarter.
Hughes connected with his favorite target, classmate Trapper Merrifield, to score Meeker’s next touchdown from the 39-yard line. Mantle added the two point conversion and the Cowboys were ahead 28-0.
“Our offense did a lot of outstanding things and our defense scored on an interception and Brennan (Jensen) returned another one to the one,” Coach Phelan said. “All phases were pretty sharp for us Friday night.”
Hughes capitalized on Jensen’s interception and junior full back Eli Hanks added the two point conversion to give the Cowboys a 36-0 lead at halftime.
Merrifield caught a 40-yard touchdown pass from Hughes in the third quarter, then played on Meeker’s defense, who held the Bulldogs to 88 total offensive yards, scored again with a “pick-six” from 40 yards out. Garza added the final point of the game.
Hughes completed seven of eight passes for 144 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for two more and 46 yards.
Merrifield caught four passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns and the interception for a touchdown, while junior Stephen Walsh caught two passes for 23 yards.
Tannen Kennedy led the defense with eight tackles, while Tevin Pelloni had seven and James Amick finished with six, the same number of times the Cowboys sacked the Bulldogs’ quarterback. Garza, Kennedy, Amick and Luis Villalpando all had one sack and Pelloni had two.
The Cowboys will play in Limon this Saturday at 1 p.m.
“We are excited to get the opportunity to go on the road and take on such a great opponent,” Coach Phalen said. “The competition just gets better and better each round.”

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