Basalt football holds off TCA, will face WSL foe Rifle in second round

Lindsey Smith
The Gazette

COLORADO SPRINGS — Basalt High School coach Carl Frerichs preached all season the importance of winning the turnover battle — especially during playoff football.

Saturday, a turnover proved to be the spark the No. 9-seeded Longhorns needed for the eventual game-winning touchdown in a 13-7 win over No. 8 The Classical Academy to punch their ticket to the second round of the Class 2A playoffs.

Basalt will face No. 1 Rifle in the quarterfinals next week. The Longhorns faced Rifle just two weeks ago in a 21-9 2A Western Slope League loss.

On the first play from scrimmage Titan quarterback Sam Guilez fumbled on the handoff, recovered by the Longhorns on the Titan 23. Basalt moved the chains once before junior quarterback Matty Gillis sent a touchdown pass to senior Jackson Rapaport.

Aided by two TCA 15-yard penalties, Gillis led the Longhorns’ first charge down the field, ending with a 10-yard pass to Rapaport.

The Titans responded with a first-drive touchdown of their own thanks to a 2-yard rush by sophomore Cade Palmer. But it proved to be the last time TCA would find the end zone the rest of the way.

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