Craig At 5 feet 4 inches and 135 pounds sopping wet, Jasen Kettle doesn't appear to be your typical football player.
That is, except when he is toting an oblong brown piece of leather.
Kettle proved his mettle Monday, scoring on runs of 35, 25 and 2 yards, leading the host junior varsity Bulldogs past rival Steamboat Springs, 44-6.
Kettle used his quickness and sharp cutting ability to slice through the Sailors' defense.
"I really can't explain it," the sophomore running back said. "I just see it and cut to it."
Kettle said he has always idolized former Detroit Lions tailback Barry Sanders, hence the nickname "Little Barry" given to him by teammates.
"That Kettle kid is just a natural," Bulldog JV coach Ron Linsacum said. "He's so small, and when he changes direction so sharply, you can't find him."
Kettle wasn't alone in helping the Bulldogs to victory against Steamboat.
Sophomore Halen Raymond started the scoring early for Moffat County, taking a hand-off around right tackle for a 10-yard score.
"It was a counter play," Raymond said. "I followed my blockers and dove for the pylon."
Sophomore Matt Linsacum, who also has started on the varsity squad the past two weeks, ran for a 3-yard score and connected with Nathan Tomlin on a perfectly-executed play-action pass, good for a 28-yard touchdown.
"It was a perfect play," Tomlin said. "I got past the coverage, and the rest was easy."
Tomlin was a force on defense, as well, picking off two errant Sailors passes and forcing two fumbles.
"I just dropped into coverage on the picks," he said. "The fumbles, I earned."
Moffat dominated the pace of play as Steamboat was unable to capture a first down until six minutes into the second quarter.
"The kids really came out hard tonight," Linsacum said. "They seemed to be having a lot of fun on the field tonight."
Raymond also returned a punt 68 yards for a score, and Pablo Salcido sacked the Sailors quarterback in the end-zone for a safety.
"Pablo played outstanding defensively," Linsacum said. "He's learning new positions every game and making the most of it."
Linsacum downplayed the notion of this being an important victory, since it was against Moffat's biggest rival.
"It's not such a big deal at this level," he said. "It's more about the kids having fun. I know I did."
The Bulldogs visit Grand Junction Central in their season finale Monday.
John Vandelinder can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 211, or firstname.lastname@example.org