Moffat County riding four-game winning streak into playoffs following Middle Park forfeit |

Moffat County riding four-game winning streak into playoffs following Middle Park forfeit

The Moffat County High School quarterback calls an audible against Meeker.
Andy Bockelman / For Craig Press

While Moffat County didn’t get a chance to play the final regular season game of the year Saturday due to a 2-0 forfeit by Middle Park due to COVID-19 roster issues, the Bulldogs get to look ahead to a first-round playoff game, starting with seeding Sunday afternoon.

With the forfeit win, the Moffat County High School Bulldogs football team has finished the regular season with a record of 4-1.

One of the biggest highlights of the 2020 season is coming in at No. 3 in the 2A Colorado High School Activities Association’s RPI standings. Moffat County Head Coach Lance Scranton was quick to level the praise on his players for that achievement.

“I mean, it’s a compliment to the hard work the kids have done this year and I’m just happy for the kids and I’m happy for the program and I’m just glad I’m a part of it,” Scranton said.

In the last game the Bulldogs played, Moffat County knocked off the Delta Panthers, 26-20 on Senior Night, claiming the 2A league championship. It was Moffat County’s first win over Delta since the 2011-12 season. Coach Scranton was excited about what that win means for the program.

“That was one of the teams that we had to beat, and taking that step was huge for us, it was huge for the kids and it couldn’t have happened on a nicer night for the kids,” Scranton said.

The win, coupled with the Middle Park forfeit, means that the Bulldogs are on a four-game winning streak, which is the team’s longest since they started last season 4-0 before struggling down the stretch to finish 5-5. Even in the midst of this four-game winning streak going into the playoffs, Scranton is emphatic about the team’s need to still clean up parts of their game, notably special teams.

“Our special teams struggled a little bit against Delta and we really want to sharpen that up as we go into playoffs,” Scranton said.

In the game against Delta, they punted the ball six times for a total of 220 yards, but no punts landed within the 20 yard line and they only had one touchback on kickoffs.

The players were obviously disappointed that they could not continue the season and take on the Panthers this weekend. Coach Scranton said that the players took it as disappointing news but news that allowed them to treat this week as a semi bye week, working on cleaning things up going into the playoffs.  

One of the players that has grown the most as a football player this season is junior quarterback Ryan Peck. This season Peck rebounded from a rough first game in which he threw for 107 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions to finish the season with a stat line of 437 yards, six touchdowns and five interceptions. All of his stats this year are down from his sophomore year, entirely due to the less games this year compared to previous years. Scranton was complimentary of his year third-year signal caller and the maturity that he has shown throughout this season.

“He’s really allowing the game to come to him this year and he’s making a lot better choices,” Scranton said.

If everything stays the same with the rankings this weekend, the Moffat County Bulldogs would play the Pagosa Springs Pirates in the first round of the playoffs.

The game would be in Moffat County, as they are the higher seed in the rankings.

While Coach Scranton was not ready to set the matchup in stone, he did say that it would be a good challenge for his football team. Coach Scranton profiled the Pirates as an option team, with a tough hard-nosed edge about them. This would be the third game in a trilogy for the Bulldogs and the Pirates with each getting a home win over the last two years.  

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