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Granada’s offensive huddle during Fleming game.
Brad Simon, WildcatPridePhoto.com

Granada Finally Avenges Losses to Fleming

By John Contreras

September 19, 2023

After years of frustration against the Fleming Wildcats, the Granada Bobcats football team finally had a reason to smile.

After four straight losses to Fleming including two in the Class 1A state semifinals (68-60 in overtime in 2022 and 52-46 in 2020), Granada ended the losing streak with a 71-19 romp in 6-man action on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023.

“It was nice to get a win on Fleming’s field after having so many down to the wire games go their way,” Granada head coach Traegon Marquez said. “Our guys are starting to click, and our game plans are fitting better and better. That’s the good thing about playing a team like Stratton early. They make us better for the long run.”

Marquez was referring to 62-28 loss to defending state champion Stratton on Sept. 1 in Stratton.

The #6 state-ranked Bobcats jumped out to a 30-12 advantage after the first quarter against #5 ranked Fleming and never looked back.

The Bobcats extended their lead to 46-19 at halftime.

The Granada defense held the Wildcats scoreless in the second half.

The Bobcats added 13 points to their lead in the third quarter and capped their scoring with 12 points in the fourth quarter.

Junior quarterback Maddox Coleman had a solid game on both sides of the ball.

He completed 7-of-14 passes for 186 yards and fired 5 TD strikes.

Coleman has now thrown 11 TDs with 3 interceptions this season.

Jonus Guevara had 4 receptions for 129 yards and 2 TDs.

Elijah Rodriguez had one catch for a 29-yard TD.

Lupe Martinez had one reception for a 14-yard TD.

Alan Ayala had two catches including 1 TD.

On the ground, Martinez gained 100 yards on 8 carries and 1 TD.

Guevara carried the ball 5 times for 35 yards and 1 TD.

Alejandro Perez had two rushes for 12 yards and 1 TD.

On defense, Coleman registered 13 solo tackles. Cole Dorenkamp followed with 9 tackles (6 solo) and Ayala and Terence Hainer both had 6 tackles apiece.

Granada (2-1) now squares off against #7 state-ranked and unbeaten Walsh (3-0) on Friday, Sept. 15.

Granada owns a 9-5 record against Walsh dating back to 2004.

The Bobcats have won the last four games including a high-scoring 102-74 shootout last year.

In that game, Granada quarterback Brandon Gonzales, who graduated last year, completed 14-of-19 passes for 256 yards and 8 TD strikes.

On the ground, Granada gained 381 yards and tallied 5 scores.

Walsh running back Leyton Jones accounted for 377 yards on offense. He rushed for 177 yards and 4 TDS. In the air, he had 94 yards receiving and 3 TDs. Jones also had 106 yards on kickoff returns.

“Walsh is a familiar league opponent,” Marquez said. “They have been an up-and-coming program for the last couple of years. This year they return everybody and we know their upper classmen are ready to get after us.”

“Last year, we had a game most of these kids won’t forget with it being high scoring but I think both myself and their coach are wanting to see our defenses step up. They’ve had a great preseason and so have we. Friday night should be a good one.”

Walsh is coming off a 58-26 victory over Primero last week.

The Eagles struck for a 32-0 lead after the first quarter and added 20 points in the second quarter to build a 52-0 advantage to put the game out of reach against the Bulldogs.

In three games this season, Jones, a senior, has rushed for 156 yards on 21 carries and scored 4 TDs. Conner McDonald has gained 155 yards on 14 carries and 2 TDs. Lane Runkle has carried the ball 7 times for 60 yards and 2 TDs.

ON DEFENSE, Jones leads the Eagles with 24 tackles (13 solo).

Axeton Bishop follows with 22 tackles (15 solo); Runkle has 21 tackles (12 solo) and McDonald has 20 tackles (12 solo).

Jones also has 3 interceptions to his credit and Samuel Wright and McDonald have 2 each.

IN OTHER CLASS A 8-MAN ACTION LAST WEEK, Holly played at #1 Haxtun where it was a long afternoon for the Wildcats as they were throttled by the Fightin’ Bulldogs, 54-6, last Saturday.

The Wildcats (1-1) will host a familiar opponent in the Akron Rams (2-1) at 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 15.

Holly and Akron are tied at 3-3 in the series. The Wildcats have won the last two encounters including a 50-48 come-from-behind win last year.

After losing their season opener to Byers on Aug. 26, the Rams defeated St. Mary’s, 43-8, on Sept. 1 and coming off a 28-14 win against Fowler on Sept. 9.

Rams senior QB Ryan McCaffrey has completed 21-of-39 attempts for 377 yards and 3 TDs.

The leading receivers are junior Anderson Filla with 7 catches for 165 yards and senior Brandon Hellyer with 7 catches for 119 yards and 1 TD.

On the ground, Filla leads the Rams in rushing with 415 yards on 34 carries with 6 TDs.

McCaffrey has gained 110 yards rushing on 26 carries and 2 TDs.

The Wiley Panthers made a road trip to play Hayden in a battle of 1-0 teams.

It didn’t go well for the Panthers as they were spanked, 46-0.

Wiley (1-1) hits the road again for a non-conference game against the Calhan Bulldogs (2-1) on Saturday, Sept. 16 at 2 p.m.

It will be homecoming for Calhan.

The Bulldogs defeated Rangely, 20-14, on Friday, Sept. 8.

In the first meeting between the two teams, Wiley defeated Calhan, 44-18, last year.

The McClave Cardinals had a bye last week.

The week before, the Cardinals were coming off one of their biggest wins in the history of the program.

McClave scored a late touchdown in the fourth quarter to beat the Merino Rams, 16-8.

The win was the first for McClave against Merino. In fact, it was the first time the Cardinals football program had beaten a High Plains Conference team.

McClave (2-0) will travel to play the Vail Christian Saints (1-1) on Saturday, Sept. 16 at 2 p.m.

This will be the first meeting between the two teams.

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