West Grand junior Travis Gore runs away from a pack of Soroco defenders Friday as the Mustangs rolled past the Rams, 46-6.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

West Grand junior Travis Gore runs away from a pack of Soroco defenders Friday as the Mustangs rolled past the Rams, 46-6.

West Grand gallops past Soroco for title

Mustangs give Rams football 2nd loss of the season with 46-6 beating

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Soroco's Jacob Hange runs the ball on Friday in the Rams' 46-6 loss to West Grand.

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Soroco senior quarterback Pie Lombardi got a face full of defensive end on Friday night as he tried to throw the ball during Soroco's game at West Grand. The Mustangs overpowered the Rams, winning the game, 46-6.

Game statistics

West Grand 46, Soroco 6

■ Score by quarter

Soroco 6-0-0-0 — 6

West Grand 16-14-16-0 — 46

■ Scoring summary

First quarter

S: 7:07, Richard Gonzales 4-yard run. (Pass fail.)

WG: 4:08, Travis Gore, 3 run. (Logan Cummings run.)

WG: 0:54, Gore 38 run. (Gore run.)

Second quarter

WG: 7:35, Tim Ritschard 4 pass from Gore. (Pass fail.)

WG: 1:26, Cummings 6 run. (Ritschard pass from Gore.)

Third quarter

WG: 9:25, Luke Miller 15 pass from Gore. (Kiley O’Brien pass from Gore.)

WG: 6:52, Luke Miller 52 pass from Gore. (Gore run.)

— In front of screaming fans and with an offense the Soroco High School football team just couldn’t stop, a group of West Grand players brought championship football back to Kremmling.

The Mustangs, behind the outstanding two-way play of junior Travis Gore, gave Soroco its second loss of the season, beating the Rams, 46-6, to lock up the Central Division of the North Conference of Colorado’s 8-man football division.

“It feels awesome. We had a great game,” Gore said. “I love my team. I love the fans. This is great.”

The loss is bad news for Soroco, 5-2 overall and 2-1 in the division, for more reasons than the obvious as the team coasts toward its first playoff appearance in five years.

The top four teams from the Rams’ division will play in two weeks against the top four from the conference’s Plains Division.

Three of those teams rank among the very best in the state, and Soroco likely will have to travel to play one of them, probably the winner of today’s Caliche vs. Day­spring Christian matchup.

“Our kids have played games like this before. Now, we’ve got to that point, but we need to see how they’re going to respond when they lose a big game,” Soroco coach David Bruner said. “Hopefully, they learned from today.”

If Soroco is to piece together a real playoff run, the team will have to answer some of the questions that cropped up Friday night against its best competition of the season.

A stout defense turned porous. West Grand, 6-1 and 3-0, was able to shift its offense to different players throughout the night, but it was Gore that Soroco tacklers will see when they close their eyes and remember the game.

He was too much running up the gut, too much cutting to the outside and too much on defense, where a key second-quarter interception stripped the Rams of a chance to stay in the game.

He finished with 254 yards of total offense, two touchdowns running and three through the air.

“We knew he was good. We knew we were going to have to stop him running the ball,” Bruner said. “They made some plays.”

Soroco forced West Grand to punt on the game’s opening possession and then drove down the field to set up a 4-yard Richard Gonzales dive that briefly put the Rams up, 6-0.

The Mustangs struggled on the next drive, as well, but converted two huge third downs before Gore ran in his first touchdown, from 3 yards out. West Grand had the lead for good after a successful two-point conversion run.

Soroco punted twice and turned the ball over twice in its ensuing four possessions. Gore caused the second turnover, grabbing an interception at the goal line and returning it 60 yards. That play set up West Grand’s Logan Cummings to score what might have been the deciding touchdown seven players later.

Soroco had five turnovers and just 148 yards offense after its initial scoring drive.

“That’s where it got away from us right there,” Bruner said about Cummings’ second-quarter score, West Grand’s second that came after a Rams’ turnover.

“It came down to the fact that we turned the ball over way too many times, and we had way too many penalties. Those were the big factors, especially in the first half.

“I knew we’d have to play almost a perfect game to beat them.”

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