The Soroco football team played a furious 12 minutes of football Friday night in Parachute. It was the other 36 minutes the Rams would like to do over.
After falling behind, 25-0, through three quarters Friday night against Grand Valley, Soroco rallied in the final quarter, scoring 19 unanswered points in a come-from-behind bid that fell just short.
"We made too many mistakes early," Soroco coach Gary Heide said. "I guess all of a sudden, the tide kind of turned."
The Rams turned the ball over on their first two possessions, which resulted in one Cardinals touchdown. Grand Valley capitalized on several other scoring drives behind a successful passing game, Heide said.
The Rams, however, put together a drive near the end of the third quarter that proved they were capable of playing with the Cardinals.
After the next kickoff, Grand Valley's quarterback threw a pass that was picked off by Soroco's Carl Remick. The Rams turned that interception into a quick score when Rams quarterback Zach Shaffner connected with Tony Iacovetto on a 48-yard scoring strike.
"We weren't getting too excited yet," Heide said. "It was 25-13. We thought we'll just kick if off, but we were joking (that) if they fumbled it and we returned it, we'd be back in it."
Grand Valley played right into Soroco's hands, fumbling the ball on its next possession. Dustin Ager recovered the loose ball. A Shaffner pass to Tony Iacovetto and a Matt Iacovetto run later, the Rams had closed the gap to one score.
Soroco's Nick Rangel tried an onside kick, but Grand Valley recovered it. Soroco wasn't able to get the ball back before time expired.
"It was a very good onside kick," Heide said. "It went deep, and the front guys let the back guys get it. We still had two timeouts if we had stopped them in three downs. They had third-and-eight, but they converted."
In Friday's 25-19 loss, Matt Iacovetto carried the ball 23 times for 136 yards and two touchdowns. Ben Montoya had seven carries for 43 yards. Shaffner was 6-of-15 for 117 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Montoya caught one pass for 22 yards, and Tony Iacovetto had three catches for 75 yards and one touchdown.
The Rams dropped to 2-2 overall and 0-2 in the Western Slope League with Meeker (2-2, 2-0) coming for a 7:30 p.m. game Friday in Oak Creek. It is the first home game for the Rams since a Sept. 4 win against Rifle's junior varsity.
Meeker is tied with Hayden atop the league standings.
"Our goal Friday night is to rise up to the occasion," Heide said. "We have to be ready to go. This is a test. We have to use the momentum we gained against Grand Valley and go out and win a game. This is a coaches' and players' test of 2004."
The good news for Soroco is it has all its players back from injuries and ready to practice. Shaffner has been forced to miss the last two weeks of practice and sat out the West Grand game Sept. 18.
-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org