By JJ Gerlach |

THE opening round of Colorado High School football playoffs saw four out of five San Luis Valley teams winning, including Alamosa with its first playoff victory in 16 years. The Moose, Centauri High, Monte Vista and Sanford all advance to quarterfinal round games in their respective classifications. Sierra Grande ended its season. Here’s a recap of games and a look ahead to this weekend’s game.

Alamosa (7-3)

The Mean Moose beat D’Evelyn 27-7 on Saturday to advance to the second round of the Colorado 2A state playoffs. Alamosa was able to have success forcing the Jaguars into turnovers, coming up with three in the second half. “They’re ballhawks, we preach turnovers all week in practice and they come out and get four for us,” said Alamosa Head Coach Drew Sandlin.

Senior quarterback Kasey Jones had a big day for the Mean Moose, collecting 240 yards and three touchdowns. “Kasey’s the best quarterback in the state, I’ve said it over and over,” said Sandlin. Alamosa will have their work cut out for them this Saturday, when they travel to Delta to take on the top-seeded Panthers. “We’re going to have to play our four best quarters of football to win,” said Sandlin. 

Next Game: At Delta, date and time TBA

Centauri (8-2)

The Falcons beat Gunnison 26-14 to extend their winning streak to seven. Centauri quarterback Leighton Curtis was able to add two touchdowns as well. Defensive back Zach Gallardo was also able to block a punt at the end of the first half and take it in for the score. Centauri, the defending Class 1A champs, will be on the road to take on Strasburg. Strasburg is led by running back Zach Marrero, who comes into the game averaging 139 rushing yards per game to go along with 26 touchdowns.

Next Game: At Strasburg, date and time TBA

Monte Vista (9-1)

The Pirates were able to get back on track in their first playoff game, beating Holyoke 28-21. Sophomore Kevin Cisneros burst onto the scene for the first time this season, finishing the game with 124 yards rushing, averaging 10 yards per carry. Defensive lineman Alex Felix also got in on the action with a blocked field goal and fumble recovery. Monte Vista will travel to Limon to take on the top-seeded Badgers. The Badgers are led by running back Gabe Schubarth, who averages 128 yards per game.

Next Game: Saturday, Nov. 12, at Limon, 1 p.m.

Sanford (7-3)

The Mustangs dominated Vail Christian 34-8 to win their first playoff game. Up next for Sanford is Haxtun, who is the one seed in the eight-man bracket. The Bulldogs have a very potent rushing attack, led by running back Michael Gerk, who comes into the game with 21 touchdowns. 

Next Game: Saturday, Nov. 12, at Haxtun, 1 p.m.

Sierra Grande (7-4)

The Panthers season ended Saturday when they lost to Otis, 55-13. Sierra Grande had a hard time stopping the Bulldogs rushing attack, as Tayte Smith and Erick Thorn combined for five touchdowns and 294 yards. Otis will move on in the six-man bracket to take on Cheyenne Wells.

Photos by Kacey Hillis