Tigers lose final home game to Glenwood, 27-13
Summit vs. Glenwood Springs
1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q Final
Summit 6 7 0 0 13
GSHS 12 8 7 0 27
FRISCO — After a firecracker first half and slow, clock-killing second, the Summit Tigers (1-8) lost the final home game of the season to Glenwood Springs (1-8), handing the Demons their first win of the season on a frigid Friday night.
It was a game of sloppy tackling, inspired running and key turnovers from both sides. The Demons wasted no time getting started. After forcing the Tigers to a quick four and out on the first drive, Demons running back Matt Osier broke free from his own 40 yard line for a 60-yard touchdown run down the Glenwood sideline with less than 2 minutes off the clock. The Tigers managed to get a hand on the point after to keep the game at 6-0.
But the Tigers couldn’t keep momentum on their side and were forced to punt again from their own 35 yard line. On the Demons’ second drive, Osier and quarterback Jake Townsley put on a show, each running for 15 yards on clutch third downs to stay deep in Tigers territory. Osier barreled through defenders again just outside of the red zone for another touchdown, only to see his team fail to find the endzone on the two-point conversion. It was another clutch stop for the Tigers defense, but with six minutes still remaining in the first quarter they were already down by 12.
Then came the turnovers. The Tigers finally found their feet in the running game, with sophomore quarterback Vale Hildebrand squeezing through defenders on failed pass plays to keep the drive alive. The Demons snatched up a fumble on their 45 yard line — the first of four in the game — but struggled to find anything with the passing game. Both teams failed to do much of anything through the air in the first half.
After getting stuffed for a loss, the Demons went for a run on third and long. The run led to a scrum and the scrum led to confusion, until Summit sophomore Jason Tilley emerged with the ball and sped down the line for a 40-yard touchdown, right as the clock expired on the first quarter. Summit also failed the two-point, but the defensive TD quickly injected fire into the cold and discouraged line. It was the first time Summit had scored in the first 12 minutes since the home opener against Skyview way back on Sept. 4.
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On the first play of the second quarter, the Demons had another fumble on a run play that was snatched up by the Summit line. The Tigers took over on the Demons’ 30 yard line and finally completed the first pass of the game, this time with senior Riley Beck at quarterback and Hilderbrand at receiver. The Demons line held strong after, forcing the Tigers to go for the first down on fourth and three at the Glenwood 18. Yet another running back came into the mix in the red zone, senior Drew Chastain, and he soon powered through missed tackles and a glaring gap to give the Tigers the lead, 13-12.
With plenty of time left in the second quarter, the Demons put together a string of big runs and their first passing plays of the game. Osier and Townsley set the pace again, with the QB sneaking through the middle to set up his running back for an easy touchdown. This time they completed the two-point conversion to jump past the Tigers, 20-13.
And that was the end of the Tigers’ night for everyone except Hildrebrand. They failed to find the endzone after taking over with four minutes left in the first half, then returned to the field with Beck under center and Hildebrand at wide reciever. He reeled in four receptions on key drives, including two low and wide throws through a jam-packed middle field. Now, one reception and one punt return (both for 20-plus yards) were called back for holding penalties, which easily could have put the Tigers in better position when the clock started slowly, slowly ticking away.
Both teams failed to do much on offense in the second half with the exception of the nail in the coffin, when the Demons forced a turnover deep in Tigers territory. Townsely held onto the ball for the next three plays, picking up 10 and 15 yards on two keepers for the final touchdown of the game. Time was not on Summit’s side from then on out, and the offense spent nearly eight minutes trying for another score early in the fourth, only to get as far as the Demons 40 yard line thanks to penalties and a few stuffed run plays. Hildebrand even had two fake punts for first downs to save his team’s fourth quarter drives, but a key interception by Glenwood’s Connor Wall killed the Tigers’ last-chance momentum. The Demons took over with a little over two minutes remaining, moved the ball easily up the field to Summit territory and drained the clock, taking their first win on a kneel.
For many players, it was a disappointing way to finish at home. The team as a whole has shrunk over the season, and by now, just about everyone is pulling double duty in all sorts of odd positions. Hildebrand and Beck traded out at quarterback, while at least three players had touches at running back. Big Jack Anderson, the team’s leading tackler, was also the kicker after both Tigers touchdowns in between having a hand on almost every play. He was again visibly ticked about missed opportunities and turnovers, just as he was when they got so very close to beating Eagle Valley for his first-ever homecoming win. After one nasty (but clean) hit in the third, he said to his teammates, “That’s what happens when you come on my field.” It wasn’t the typical reaction of a cocky football player trying to brag — more like the frustrated statement of a senior who knows this was his last home game.
But it’s not the last of his high school career. The Tigers head to Steamboat Springs (2-6) on Oct. 30 and then to Rifle (7-1) on Nov. 6 for the season finale.
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