Summit capitalizes on Aspen errors to win 35-14
ASPEN – The Summit High School football team bounced back well on Saturday in Aspen after being shutout out at home last week.After the game, Aspen coach Travis Benson made no excuses for his team’s six turnovers against the Tigers in a 35-14 loss. Summit, rotating a bruising pack of running backs, made Aspen pay for its mistakes. Four of the Tigers’ five touchdowns came on drives following takeaways.”You can’t win a football game with six turnovers. It’s pure and simple,” Benson said. “We were a little bit rusty today. I don’t know why. We had pretty crisp practices this week. We were just a little bit rusty, but we’ll clean it up next week and we’ll go to work. When it comes down to it, you’ve got to control the football.”Both teams traded punts on their opening drives before Aspen (1-1) threatened to score on its second possession. But the drive ended on the Summit 26-yard line when Aspen junior quarterback Whit Fuller threw an interception to Summit’s Tim Henning.The Tigers (2-1) took the momentum and ran with it, needing only three plays to score. SHS junior wide receiver Drew Crangle finished the drive with a 36-yard reverse that fooled the Skiers’ defense.
A pattern then began to emerge. Aspen drove down to the Tigers’ 45 on the ensuing possession, but Fuller was sacked and fumbled and Summit recovered. Nine plays later, all bruising runs, SHS went up by two scores when junior running back Robert Phipps hammered his way into the end zone from nine yards out.The Skiers’ turnover woes continued in the second half. Aspen tailback Jackson Davis bobbled an exchange from Fuller early in the third quarter, and Summit capitalized five plays later when Billy Barto punched it in from the four-yard line to give SHS a 21-0 lead.Aspen sophomore quarterback Harry Maniloff then spelled Fuller, but fumbled the ball away on his first exchange. Summit failed to score off that takeaway, but did score off the next one – a botched punt return by sophomore Tucker Eason. After a Ryan Eberhart 18-yard touchdown catch from Talon Roggasch gave Summit a 28-0 lead late in the third, Aspen made things interesting. Maniloff ignited the Aspen offense with a 32-yard strike to junior Michael Ufkes on the first play of the ensuing Aspen drive.
Then, on first-and-10 from the Tigers’ 38, Skiers’ senior tailback Jackson Davis took a hand-off and went untouched through the Summit defense to the end zone. Still down, 28-6, after Fuller missed the extra point, Davis then pulled his team within two scores with a momentum-swinging interception return for a touchdown on the first play of the fourth quarter.Behind the legs of Phipps and fellow junior Tim Henning, Summit had driven all the way down to the Aspen 26 before Roggasch threw the pick. The Tigers’ freshman QB had Aspen junior defensive tackle David Clark in his face when he released the ball and apparently never saw Davis.Maniloff then connected with Ufkes on the two-point conversion, pulling the Skiers to within two touchdowns.The momentum continued to swing in Aspen’s favor when Summit, on its own 14, gave the ball right back to the Skiers’ offense. Phipps was stripped of the ball as he charged through the line by Eason, setting up Aspen in perfect scoring position.But a dramatic Skiers’ comeback was not to be. Aspen fullback Adam Huber lost yards on first down, then Maniloff threw incomplete before being sacked on third down. On fourth, Maniloff was unable to hook up with senior tight end Jay Stutsman on another incompletion.
Summit took over on downs and took back control of the game, putting together an 8-play, 71-yard drive capped by a five-yard Billy Barto touchdown run to end the scoring.The Tigers racked up 317 yards rushing in the game, with Henning, Phipps, Barto and Crangle all carrying for at least 68 yards each.On defense, Summit linebacker Cameron Chapman led the way with 10 tackles, three of which were behind the line of scrimmage. Summit coach Dylan Hollingsworth was pleased to pick up the win, but like Benson was disappointed by his team’s turnovers. “What we’ve got to do is learn to play 48 straight minutes,” Hollingsworth said. “If we put together a full game, then we’re going to have a real good team. I know they had more turnovers, but the big deal for me is that if we don’t turn the ball over, we probably win that thing, 42-7, or 49-7.” Davis finished as Aspen’s leading rusher, going for 85 yards on 10 carries. Maniloff finished with 110 yards of passing, with six completions on 15 attempts and the one pick. Ufkes was the leading receiver with four catches for 92 yards.Summit travels to Vail on Friday to match up with Battle Mountain at 7 p.m.
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