Eagle Valley downs Steamboat football, 35-21

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The Eagle Valley Devils got their first 2-0 start since 2007 on Friday night with a 35-21 win against the Steamboat Springs Sailors. For Steamboat, it was the 22nd consecutive loss dating to 2009.

Eagle Valley opened with a superb drive, consisting of a whopping 15 plays. Devils quarterback Jordon Hudspeth converted on a third-and-12 from the Eagle Valley 34 with a 16-yard strike to Sam Boyd. Two plays later, Cole Nielsen ripped off a 13-yard scamper.

Ayren Hart burst for five yards on a fourth-and-3 on the next set of downs. The Devils’ backs continued hammering with Rick Ramunno plunging in from two yards out for a 7-0 lead.

Steamboat was driving early in the second quarter until a bad snap set the Sailors back to the Eagle Valley 43. Steamboat’s Dylan Wilkinson promptly ran 28 yards for a first down; however, the Devils’ defense stood its ground with sacks by Ty Framboise and Hart.

Eagle Valley made it 14-0 with another lengthy drive. Jay Dostal had a key 10-yard run, followed by another eight from Nielsen. Ramunno had the final 12 yards, including his second touchdown.

By the end of the first half, Eagle Valley’s offensive line was blowing holes in the Steamboat defense. Nielsen chewed up 52 of the Devils’ 58 yards on the third scoring drive of the evening. That drive was all of four plays with Nielsen plowing in for a 7-yard score.

The Sailors got their first score of the season on their first drive of the second half. Steamboat quarterback Christian Ramirez completed 5-of-7 passes, all to Skyler Kauf. Sailors running back Brad Ryan did the honors from 1 yard out.

Nonetheless, Eagle Valley responded nicely with Nielsen, Dostal and Ramunno pouring out of the double-wing for solid gains. Nielsen notched his second score with a 3-yard run with two minutes left in the third quarter.

The Devils’ defense did its job on the ensuing possession, forcing a three-and-out, but Eagle Valley fumbled the punt, and the Sailors had the ball on the Devils’ 28. On fourth-and-8, Ramirez hit Penn Lukens on a 26-yard touchdown strike.

Nielsen had a big run on fourth-and-2 on the Steamboat 39 in the fourth quarter. The Sailors appeared to have Nielsen wrapped up, but he busted tackles for a 6-yard gain. Three plays later, the senior blew apart more tackles for his third touchdown of the night.

Ramirez continued to fire away, and he pulled the Sailors within 35-21 with the short-passing game. Ramirez used his mobility and his arm well, slicing up the Devils’s defense. Ramirez capped the drive with a 5-yard pass to Ben Custer.

Steamboat got the ball after an Eagle Valley fumble. And Ramirez fired a 25-yard pass to Kauf, 15 yards to Lukens and a 23 to Billy Clark. Eagle Valley finally turned the Sailors away on downs with 1:42 left with Nielsen batting away a fourth-down pass.

Steamboat Springs returns home for Summit County next week.

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