Playoffs – Week 1

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2012 Playoffs – Week 1:
Rifle Bears vs. Erie Tigers – 1:00PM Saturday November 10 – Bears Stadium – Rifle, CO

Rifle’s second straight undefeated regular season is in the books. A streak that began in August 2011 at Grand Valley is still intact. Rifle has won 20 regular season football games in a row. It is a great accomplishment for the team and for individuals, like Adam Rice, who is now 21-1 as the starting quarterback for the Bears.

As the only 3A football team without a loss, Rifle earned the number one overall seed when CHSAA published the 3A football bracket yesterday.

Rifle’s end of the year stats showed that they outscored opponents 434 to 35. The 35 points allowed was the result of five shut-outs out of the ten games played. What is interesting about the number 35 is that 19 of those points were allowed after Rifle pulled its starters. So, on the year, Rifle’s starting defense has yielded sixteen points and has shut out seven out of ten opponents.

Ryan Moeller had another great performance on Friday. Despite not playing the second half, Moeller tallied 209 yards on just 12 carries. He scored three touchdowns and eclipsed the 2000 yard mark for the season. He finishes the 2012 regular season with 2202 yards.

Always the unsung hero, Kellin Leigh turned in his usual strong performance with 94 yards on six carries and two touchdowns. Leigh finished the regular season with 847 yards on 80 carries.

Erie Tigers

The Bears drew the #16 Erie Tigers as their first round opponent. The Tigers will be a tough out. They are 7-3 on the season and have outscored their opponents 344 to 155. Erie runs a double-wing offense and spends some time in the double-tight robust as well. Rifle just completed a 52-13 victory over another double-wing team in Eagle Valley on Friday, so they are familiar with what they will be facing. But Erie’s version of the double-wing looks a lot more like Battle Mountain’s than Eagle Valley’s. Like the Huskies of 2011, the Tigers’ counter and counter-trey plays are their staples.

The stats are clear, with 2,804 yards on the ground, the Tigers are a consistently run-based team. They also spread the ball around. No runner has more than 1,000 yards but three backs have crossed the 500 yard mark. Joey Ramey (#28) leads the Tigers in rushing with 747 yards. Pedro Anderson (#2) is a quick and dynamic fullback who runs hard. Anderson has 590 yards on the year. Junior Christian Mickey is a wingback with 630 yards on the year. Erie throws rarely, with quarterback Tristen Lyle averaging just 2.6 passes per game with 407 yards and three touchdowns. One of the Tiger’s best running options, Sr. Ryne Atkins is out for the season with broken leg suffered in the Northridge game.

Erie has losses on the year to Northridge (42-28), conference champ Frederick (21-7), and Holy Family (43-42). The Holy Family loss was in double-overtime. All three of those teams are playoff teams and the games were competitive for the most part. On the flip-side, Erie does not have a win over a team that ended the season with a winning record. Their highest-quality win was a victory over 5-5 Skyline.

With an enrollment of 751 students, Erie joined the 3A ranks in 2010 and made the playoffs that year. They lost to Canon City 35-21 in the first round. In 2011 the Tigers were 4-6 and missed the playoffs. In 2008, the Tigers lost an overtime thriller to Olathe in the 2A state championship game. Erie won a 1A state championship in 1997. The Tigers are coached by Larry Gartrell, who has been at the helm for 17 years. Erie is located northeast of Boulder.

News Round-Up:

2012 Colorado 3A Football Bracket
Rifle gets No. 1 seed in Class 3A playoffs – GSPI
Rifle unbeaten in regular season, topping Eagle Valley, 52-13 – GSPI
2012 Erie Tigers at a glance –
Erie makes case for playoff spot with win over Centaurus –
Cracked sternum can’t sideline Erie’s Jensen –
Erie routs Denver North to halt losing skid –
Erie at Northridge – 9 News Video
Erie squanders lead, loses Atkins to ankle injury –
Denver Post Sports Class 3a Football Playoff Preview
Who’s No. 1 not on Bears’ mind – Rifle Citizen Telegram
Bears care about the win, not the accolades – GSPI
Erie gunning for upset of No. 1 Rifle in 3A playoffs –
Week 11 football playoff capsules –
Last six football squads standing have overcome plenty of obstacles –
Erie vs. Holy Family 2012 (Video) – Youtube
3A Football Capsules – GJ Daily Sentinel (Subscription Required)
Rifle gets top seed in 3A – GJ Daily Sentinel (Subscription Required)
Moeller, Bears rout EV – GJ Daily Sentinel (Subscription Required)