By Bobby Gutierrez
MEEKER | A 34-7 win over the Grand Valley Cardinals last Saturday in Parachute, extends the Meeker Cowboys’ winning streak to six, their last loss coming in the Colorado 1A state championship game. The Cowboys started the season ranked No. 2 but a formula used by Maxpreps.com, moved the Cowboys to No. 3.
“The rankings don’t mean much, we play who’s on our schedule and play the best we can,” Meeker head coach Shane Phelan said of the formula, which he believes uses 50 percent of his team’s record, along with 25 percent of his team’s opponent’s record and 25 percent of his team’s opponent’s, opponent’s record is to determine the rankings. “Effort is a big deal for us and I’m happy we are continuing to improve. Every day of practice, is an opportunity for us to go to work and strive to get better, doing things our community can be proud of.”
The Cowboys made the community proud by remaining undefeated, using their defense to score first and balanced offense to control the game against the Cardinals from the start.
“Our defense kind of set the tone from the start,” Coach Phelan said.
Phelan said Jerrick Garza, James Amick, Eli Newman and Tannen Kennedy applied pressure to Grand Valley’s quarterback, forcing him to throw an interception to teammate Logan Hughes, who returned it 20-yards for a touchdown and the first points of the game.
Senior running back Doak Mantle scored two touchdowns and Hughes connected with senior classmate Trapper Merrifield for another.
“We were able to run effectively to start the game, which opens up our passing game,” Coach Phelan said. “A lot of kids, did a lot of good things.”
Mantle carried the ball 16 times and ran for 110 yards, while Kennedy, who along with Mantle led the team with eight tackles each, also carried the ball for 38 yards and caught a pass for 15.
Hughes completed nine of 13 passes for 205 yards and he rushed for 35 yards. Merrifield caught three passes for 98 yards, senior Jacob Pelloni caught two for 60 and Stephen Walsh caught two passes for 26 yards, while Eli Hanks also caught a pass and rushed for 16, from his fullback position.
Amick, Garza and Kennedy all sacked the Cardinals’ quarterback and Hughes, Walsh and Garrett Frantz all intercepted him.
The Cowboys will host the Cedaredge Bruins this Friday in Starbuck Stadium for their third league game of the season, with the kickoff scheduled for 7 p.m.
By Bobby Gutierrez