Basalt football beats Coal Ridge on homecoming, reaches perfect 6-0 | AspenTimes.com

Basalt football beats Coal Ridge on homecoming, reaches perfect 6-0

After a couple of sluggish road wins in a row, the Basalt High School football team came out with a bit more aplomb Friday against Coal Ridge. Led by a shutdown defense and a reasonably efficient offense, the Longhorns rolled to a 34-0 homecoming win on the rain-soaked BHS field.

"The win was awesome," Basalt senior running back Jake Reardon said. "We came out a lot better than our last two games. A lot more prepared, a lot more excited, a lot more energy. Just the whole vibe of being home and having our home crowd here is a lot more fun."

This was the fourth shutout of the season for the No. 6-ranked Longhorns, who moved to 6-0 overall on the season and 2-0 in Class 2A Western Slope League play. Through six games, Basalt has only allowed a combined 19 points, with Moffat County scoring most of them a week ago in Craig, a 33-13 BHS win.

Coal Ridge dropped to 1-5 overall and 0-2 in WSL play. They lost 36-8 to No. 3 Rifle last week in their league opener.

"The best thing is the kids are working hard, they are playing hard. Homecoming week there is always a lot going on," Basalt coach Carl Frerichs said. "Defensively, I just think we are playing really responsible football, and that's credit to all the kids out there doing their jobs, flying around. And we got some big, strong kids up there. We are hard to move on the D-line, and our linebackers are really smart players who know what their jobs are."

As solid as the defense was against Coal Ridge, it was the Longhorn offense that made the early statement. Led by a heavy dose of Reardon, BHS marched right down the field on its first possession and ended it with a 19-yard quarterback run by Trevor Reuss for the 7-0 lead.

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The score was 13-0 at halftime after a short run by Tai Kim midway through the second quarter. That play was set up by a 44-yard pass and catch from Reuss to Jackson Rapaport. The offense had chances for more points, but came up empty-handed on a few other redzone trips.

"We definitely had some opportunities," Frerichs said. "I'm just excited we got out of here injury free and ready to move on to Delta. But really proud of the kids for the way they played."

Basalt cruised through the second half. An 8-yard run by Reardon made it 20-0 midway through the third quarter, and it was 27-0 going into the fourth after Reuss recovered a defensive fumble in the end zone for his second score.

The final points came on a surprising 55-yard run by sophomore Peter Zimmer, who has only started to see significant playing time the past few weeks because of injuries.

"That was awesome," Reardon said. "No one really knew he had wheels like that. It's fun to see him out in the open and bust one loose on homecoming."

The stakes get higher next week, as Basalt will host Delta in a critical WSL game. The Panthers fell to 4-2 overall and 1-1 in league play with a 34-7 loss to Rifle on Friday. Delta beat Aspen 49-40 in its WSL opener, with the Skiers thrashing Moffat County 51-7 on Friday to get to 4-2 and 1-1, as well.

Basalt beat Delta 35-7 a season ago and lost 42-7 in 2016, but both of those were non-league games and came in the early part of the season. All bets are off when the teams meet next week in Basalt.

"They are coming for us and we are coming for them. So is Rifle," BHS senior lineman Goskany Luquin said. "We don't like to look at the 6-0 as 6-0. We like to take it one step at a time, and right now we are calling it 0-0."

acolbert@aspentimes.com

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