Football roundup: Valor Christian beats Mullen for the first time

(Paige Stingley/Valor Christian Athletics)

Luke McCaffrey rushed for two touchdowns as Valor Christian got its first-ever win over Mullen on Friday night.

The Eagles, top-ranked in and two-time defending champions of Class 5A, beat the No. 4 Mustangs 31-7. 

With senior Blake Stenstrom out due to a concussion, it was the first career start at quarterback for McCaffrey.

"Any player that comes into the game just wants to do everything that they can," McCaffrey told Altitude TV after the game. "I don't really focus on the snaps, just making the snaps count. I really just went out there and tried to do everything I could."

Valor Christian was 0-2 against Mullen in the short history of their rivalry, having lost to the Mustangs last season and in 2012.

"It was incredible, just to do something that nobody at Valor has done before," McCaffrey told Altitude. "That was one of our themes all week, just focusing on that: do what's never been done, and do everything you can for your brothers.

"I thought each and every player contributed. ... It was special to see."

The Eagles' Joshia Davis had a key touchdown late in the first half when he scored off an option pitch with three seconds remaining. Davis had set the Eagles up at the 2-yard-line with a long run just before the half.

Valor Christian travels to play at Greater Atlanta Christian next week, while Mullen continues a tough early slate of its own by playing No. 5 Regis Jesuit. The Mustangs lost to No. 2 Pomona in Zero Week.

3A: (3) Holy Family 56, (8) Palisade 20


Holy Family went on the road and put on a show.

Palisade actually had rallied from an early 14-0 hole to tie the game at 14-14, but then Holy Family connected on a 50-yard touchdown pass from Stone Samaras to Kyle Helbig on 4th down and 1.

It was quickly 35-14 at halftime, and then Samaras found Helbig again on the third play of the second half to make it 42-14.

Samaras finished with four touchdown passes and a rushing score. Helbig had three receiving touchdowns.

2A: (7) Sterling 42, (8) D'Evelyn 28

Sterling moved to 2-0 with yet another big top-10 win on Friday night.

The Tigers beat No. 6 Resurrection Christian in Zero Week.

"We've had a pretty good run these two games of being able to put together enough to win a football game," coach Rob Busmente told the Colorado Preps Scoreboard Show after the game.

4A/5A: Boulder 27, (9) Denver South 25

Boulder Denver South football

(Jeff Tucker/

Boulder won on the final play of the game after an 80-yard kickoff return set up a 1-yard touchdown.

On Friday, the Panthers jumped out to a 16-0 lead, and also led 18-6 at halftime. Denver South battled back and eventually took the lead, but last-second heroics from Patrick Fletcher on his return set up the winning touchdown by Shane Provost.

Provost's score came on a shovel pass, according to

It was a great note to start the 2017 season for the Panthers. Last season, Denver South beat Boulder 56-17 to open the season. Boulder went on to finish 1-9.

"There was 12 seconds left and I wanted to score and I wanted to get that 'W' because I knew it would change the program and change the environment," Fletcher told of his kick return.

Find a photo gallery from the game here.

Chase for the state wins record

Both Kent Denver and West Grand won on Friday night, which means that Kent coach Scott Yates will retain sole possession of the state wins record.

Kent, ranked No. 1 in 2A, beat Eagle Valley 41-0. That is win No. 317 for Yates.

West Grand, No. 6 in 8-man, beat Sanford 40-0. That is win No. 316 for coach Chris Brown.


  • In 8-man, Justice beat Nederland 44-13. It was the first on-field game for new Nederland coach Beth Buglione, who is the first female coach in state history. Nederland only had nine players available on Friday, according to the school. Here's BoCoPreps' story on the game.
  • In a rematch of the 6-man title game, No. 3 Cheyenne Wells beat No. 1 Flagler 70-20. It's complicated, but many of Flagler's players played at Hi-Plains last season when Flagler dropped its program. This season, Hi-Plains dropped its program, and now many of those players are playing for Flagler.
  • In a big 5A game, No. 5 Regis Jesuit fought off No. 3 Cherry Creek, 25-20. The Raiders led 12-0 after the first quarter, but the Bruins slowly chipped away. They cut it as close to 19-14 in the fourth quarter but Kiahn Martinez had a TD that sealed the game with a minute to play for Regis.
  • 2A No. 3 La Junta beat Gunnison 42-0, and 1A No. 1 Strasburg beat No. 8 Burlington 24-6. That extended each team's winning streak to 14 games, which is the most in the state.
  • Caliche snapped a 15-game losing streak with a 50-28 win over Kiowa. 
  • In the Pigskin Classic, Pueblo West beat Pueblo County 28-7.
  • Another local rivalry: Fort Collins beat Fossil Ridge 17-6. Fort Collins finished minus-5 in turnover margin but still won. "Our defense stuck their neck out there, and they played hard the whole night," coach Eric Rice told the Scoreboard Show.
  • In 1A, Monte Vista upset No. 9 Cedaredge 31-8. "We just kind of wore them out in the second half," coach Manny Wasinger told the Scoreboard Show.
  • In 2A, No. 9 Faith Christian edged No. 6 Resurrection Christian 9-0.
  • 4A No. 5 Windsor beat Vista Ridge 14-3 in the return of coach Chris Jones. Jones took a year off of coaching before returning to the sidelines this fall.
  • 6-man: No. 6 Stratton/Liberty ran away from No. 7 Genoa-Hugo 51-14. "It was a weird 6-man game," coach Toby Kechter told the Scoreboard Show. "Usually, it's a two-or-three touchdown game and you're nervous as heck, but our defense was so good that it just felt really good and our kids were really confident in what we were doing."
  • 8-man: No. 3 Hoehne edged No. 4 Sargent 30-27. "Things went our way in the end," coach Gabe Dasko told the Scoreboard Show. "I just kept telling our kids: 'You guys have got to learn to finish in the end.' Our two big leaders, Jacob Yates and Trystan Moltrer, stepped up and made some big plays for us."
  • Grand Junction beat local rival Grand Junction Central 21-0.
  • Buena Vista and Alamosa didn't kick their game off until 9:32 p.m. due to a shortage of officials. They ended at 11:45 p.m., a 37-7 Alamosa win.

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