Injury-riddled Rams lose to Hotchkiss

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— Going into Saturday's game, Soroco head football coach Andy Reust knew his team was up against some unfavorable odds.

They had to make a 4 1/2 hour trip to Hotchkiss. Reust had several players out with injuries, including four linemen. Numerous players had to play new positions because of the injuries and, to top it off, the Rams faced a school with players twice as big as they, and in 92-degree weather.

"Their three running backs were bigger than any lineman I had," Reust said.

Still, the Rams coach came away from the 35-6 loss against Hotchkiss with a sense of accomplishment.

Having to play sophomores and some freshmen, Reust said his team managed well against Hotchkiss and that the score wasn't indicative of how well the Rams played.

"Our kids hung in there," Reust said. "I am happy with the effort."

If not for two mental mistakes that cost his team two touchdowns, Reust said the Rams would have been down only 7-0 going into halftime. Instead, the mental errors gave Hotchkiss 14 points.

Reust said his team came out a little timid of the bigger school. But at halftime, Reust told his team that they could play with Hotchkiss.

Early in the third quarter, running back Bryan Spaeth got the Rams on the scoreboard. His 3-yard touchdown run capped off an impressive drive where, Reust said, the running game dominated.

Unfortunately, Spaeth had to come out of the game shortly after because of leg cramps.

Reust said when he looks at the tough 1A Western Slope league, a game against a quality opponent such as Hotchkiss should help in the long run.

"You always hope a game like this against a bigger school will happen you down the road," he said. "Today, we found out we could play with a lot of teams. We'll get back to work Tuesday and get ready for Saratoga next week."

-To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229 or e-mail lgraham@steamboatpilot.com

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