Big matchups in state football playoffs
The Aspen Times
High school football playoffs take a giant step forward this week in Colorado.
In Class 2A, the playoffs enter the quarterfinal phase: Eight teams are still standing.
And three of those eight are undefeated.
Two teams from the western half of the state — Gunnison and Montezuma-Cortez — also remain in the 2A field.
Gunnison (9-1) will travel to Eaton (7-3) for a Saturday afternoon quarterfinal game. Gunnison advanced with a 29-28 win over Sterling in overtime last weekend in Gunnison in the opening-round of the state playoffs.
The Cowboys needed a 90-yard touchdown run by Brady Wilson to force OT.
The Cowboys’ only loss of the season came against No. 2 seed and unbeaten Kent Denver 39-12 early in the season.
Montezuma-Cortez, a Class 3A school playing down in 2A this season, will take on that unbeaten Kent Denver team (10-0) on Saturday in Englewood.
Cortez (8-2), in the state football playoffs for the first time in a decade, beat St. Mary’s of Colorado Springs 40-37 last weekend. Cortez opened the season with a 33-0 victory over the Aspen Skiers. Cortez plays in the Western Slope South League.
Kent Denver blasted La Junta 58-21 last weekend in the first round of the playoffs.
The No. 1 seed in Class 2A is Brush (10-0).
The Beetdiggers eliminated Moffat County from the Western Slope North League last weekend.
Brush rolled over the Bulldogs 49-7. Moffat County lost 34-14 at Aspen earlier in the season.
Brush will host Faith Christian (8-2) in a clash of 2A titans on Saturday. This will mark the sixth time Brush and Faith Christian have met in the state payoffs.
Faith Christian won state championships in 2009 and 2006.
Platte Valley (7-3), last year’s 2A state champion, will play at undefeated Strasburg (10-0) in the quarterfinals Saturday. The two used to be members of the same league — the fabled Patriot League. But this year Strasburg was moved to the Frontier League.
Platte Valley, located in Kersey in Weld County, won the state football championship in 2007 as well as last year.
The Brush-Faith Christian winner will take on the Eaton-Gunnison winner in the 2A state semifinals.
In the other half of the bracket, the Kent Denver-Cortez winner will play the Strasburg-Platte Valley winner.
In Class 1A, defending state champion Paonia (10-0) will play at Platte Canyon (8-1).
Meeker (9-1) will host Rye (8-2); Buena Vista (10-0) will host Crowley County (8-2); and Centauri (7-3) will play at Resurrection Christian (9-1) in Loveland in the other quarters.
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