AURORA | Vista PEAK and Rangeview met for the first time on the football field Friday night and it was an emotion-filled debut with memorable moments on both sides.
The Bison came out swinging in the opening half and got off to a fast start on three touchdown runs from senior Ja’Derris Carr, then held off a rally by the Raiders on their way to a 33-14 victory at Aurora Public Schools Stadium.
Senior Victor Owens and junior Jordy Ruiz threw touchdown passes to junior Christopher Marquez and sophomore Anthony Sotelo-Lares, respectively, as coach John Sullivan’s Vista PEAK team — ranked No. 1 in CHSAANow’s Class 5A coaches poll — moved to 3-0 at the midway point of the spring regular season.
Third-ranked Rangeview (2-1) suffered its first loss under new head coach Mike Holmes despite a second half surge that featured touchdown passes from senior Reece Berkey to senior Skyler Davis and sophomore DJ Collins-Boston.
Junior DeMario Williams had three interceptions for the Raiders, two that launched scoring drives for Rangeview and another in the red zone to prevent another Vista PEAK score.
Both teams came into the game pumped up and it helped the defenses get off to strong starts, as both offenses stalled on their opening possessions.
As he also did in the previous two games, Carr got the Bison going when he got to the edge and jetted 63 yards up the sideline to the end zone to put Vista PEAK ahead midway through the opening quarter. He found the end zone again in the late stages of the quarter from 2 yards out to cap a 60-yard drive that took three minutes.
Rangeview pinned Vista PEAK at its own 1 yard-line after Daryl White downed a punt before it reached the end zone, but the Bison struck a big blow when Carr again broke into the clear around the end of the line, stiff-armed Williams to gain some separation and went 99 yards to the end zone.
Owens’ 14-yard touchdown pass to Marquez capped the a short drive following a turnover on downs and Vista PEAK took a 26-0 lead into the break.
The Raiders gained some momentum on Williams’ interception in Bison territory early in the third period, which started a 45-yard drive that concluded in Berkey’s TD toss to Davis.
Ruiz, who played most of the second half at quarterback, dropped one into the hands of Sotelo-Lares for a 17-yard score on the second offensive play of the fourth quarter to answer.
One play after Williams’ second interception, Berkey tossed a short pass to Collins-Boston, who weaved his way from the sideline and across the field to the end zone for another Rangeview score. Wiliams came up with his third pick in the red zone on the ensuing drive to prevent a Vista PEAK score, but Sotelo-Lares returned the favor to end the series.
Vista PEAK plays host to the Far Northeast Warriors (0-1) at 6:30 p.m. April 8, while Rangeview has a 7 p.m. April 9 contest against Denver South (3-0) at All-City Stadium.
Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at [email protected]: @aurorasports. FB: Sentinel Prep Sports
VISTA PEAK 33, RANGEVIEW 14
Score by quarters:
Vista PEAK 12 14 0 7 — 33
Rangeview 0 0 6 8 — 14
Vista PEAK — Ja’Derris Carr 63 yard run (pass failed), 6:27
Vista PEAK — Carr 2 yard run (kick failed), 2:05
Vista PEAK — Carr 99 yard run (Miguel Mendez III kick), 11:29
Vista PEAK — Christopher Marquez 14 yard pass from Victor Owens (Mendez III kick), 6:20
Rangeview — Skyler Davis 12 yard pass from Reece Berkey (kick failed), 4:01
Vista PEAK — Anthony Sotelo-Lares 17 yard pass from Jordy Ruiz (Mendez III kick), 11:47
Rangeview — DJ Collins-Boston 55 yard pass from Berkey (Jeffrey Afriyie run), 6:26