Grandview sophomore Donavon Vernon (35) heads upfield during the second half of the Wolves’ 34-23 Week 6 football win over Eaglecrest on Oct. 1, 2022, at Legacy Stadium. Grandview pulled event with Eaglecrest with a city-high five wins and dealt the Raptors their first defeat as part of a 3-8 Week 6 for Aurora football teams. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Sentinel Colorado)

The Aurora area is now without an undefeated football program, as Eaglecrest’s unbeaten start came to an end in Week 6.

The Raptors’ loss was one of several in the week — which marked the advent of league play for the majority of teams — as city teams finished with a combined 3-8 mark.

Grandview earned one of those victories, while simultaneously adding to the city’s loss column with its 34-23 victory over Eaglecrest Oct. 1 at Legacy Stadium. The teams squared off to open 5A League 4 play and their matchup served as the centerpiece of the Cherry Creek Schools’ Military Appreciation event.

A Boeing CH-47 Chinook helicopter sat in the parking lot outside the stadium for fan tours and circled the stadium prior to kickoff the game, while the opening coin toss had an honorary officiant in Commander John “Freeride” Coombs.

Once the action began (which happened late due to lightning in the area), Grandview (5-1, 1-0) established a ground game that would carry it to victory. Sophomore Donavon Vernon rushed for 233 yards and two touchdowns, junior quarterback Liam Szarka also had two rushing scores and senior Chase Dahir had another for coach Tom Doherty’s Wolves. Senior quarterback Jacob Schmitt threw touchdown passes to senior Peyton Taylor and sophomore Zavion Gamble for coach Mike Schmitt’s Raptors (5-1, 0-1) while senior Diego Cearns returned a second half kickoff for a touchdown.

Overland picked up a thrilling 34-32 Homecoming victory over Westminster Sept. 30 in 5A League 7 play at Stutler Bowl thanks to a furious rally in the fourth quarter. Coach Kyle Reese’s Trailblazers (3-3, 1-0) faced a 12-point deficit early in the final period after giving up a special teams touchdown, but an interception by senior Quincy Humphrey gave them a spark. Junior Talil Seals-Fisher threw three touchdown passes to senior Curtis Bunton IV, including two in the fourth quarter rally, and sophomore Jarrius Ward rushed for a pair of scores for Overland, which prevented a tying two-point conversion with just over a minute left.

In a driving rain Sept. 30 at Lou Kellogg Stadium, Regis Jesuit snapped a two-game losing streak with a 42-14 win over Douglas County to start the 5A League 6 slate. Senior speedster D’Andre Barnes caught two touchdown passes from senior quarterback Exander Carroll — the first of which covered 91 yards after the offense started a possession at the 1 yard-line — for the Raiders (3-3, 1-0), while Carroll also found senior Dylan McCollough with a TD pass. Junior Anthony Medina scored twice on the ground and senior Adin Chase also got into the end zone for coach Danny Filleman’s Regis Jesuit team.

Three Aurora teams went down to defeat on Sept. 29 as coach Brandon Alconcel’s Smoky Hill team (1-5, 0-1 in 5A League 4 play) fell to Arapahoe 37-22 despite 112 yards rushing and two touchdowns from senior Tyliq Bowers and a touchdown pass from sophomore Zion Brake to senior Jamahll Humphrey; Cherokee Trail (3-3, 0-1 in 5A League 4) got a late touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Eliot Ming to senior Noah Greer but coach Justin Jajczyk’s squad fell to top-ranked Cherry Creek 34-7 at Legacy Stadium and senior Armani Patterson rushed for a touchdown and junior Jah Alexander caught a scoring pass from senior Abunu Asfaw, but coach Chris Dixon’s Rangeview team (2-3, 0-1 in 5A League 2) couldn’t keep pace with rolling Legacy in a 35-14 loss at APS Stadium.

Senior Tatum Starks got the Hinkley football team on the board in its Sept. 30 matchup with Thornton at APS Stadium, but coach Dennis York’s Thunderbirds (0-6, 0-3 in 4A League 8) couldn’t catch up in a 47-6 defeat. On the same night, Aurora Central dropped a 14-12 road contest at Adams City as coach Chris Kelly’s Trojans moved to 2-3 overall and 0-1 in 4A League 7 play.

Gateway’s two-game winning streak came to an end Oct. 1 with a 33-0 defeat to visiting Widefield at APS Stadium as coach Rico McCoy’s Olys now sit 2-3 and 2-1 in 4A League 8. Senior D’Quan McClennon’s kickoff return touchdown sparked Vista PEAK in its matchup with Thomas Jefferson at All-City Stadium, but coach DaVaughn Thornton Sr.’s Bison (1-5, 0-1 in 4A League 8) came up just short in a 21-20 loss.

Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports

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