Jesse Thuerk was nervous for weeks and rightfully so. The Lakewood High junior, playing goalie for the Columbine Rebels, was set to face the program — Ralston Valley — that he grew up following when he played midget hockey in Arvada. Now he found himself in net — in the 2016-17 season opener at that — against the Mustangs.
But the tension that he had been feeling was non-existent Dec. 1. He was, as he said, unusually calm.
Be it the anemic foul shooting, the 56 total fouls between the teams or Columbine’s relative inexperience — the team doesn’t have a single senior on this year’s roster — the Lady Rebels have no shortage of things to address. Especially after the finals of the Rebel for a Cause tournament on Dec. 3 at Columbine High School.
LAKEWOOD — As soon as David Moore III broke through the line on 4th-and-1 from the Chatfield 24 on his way to the end zone, the collective wind was taken out of Chatfield’s sail. The Chargers faithful sitting in the west stands at Jefferson County Stadium on Nov. 26 were silent.
CHATFIELD CHARGERS Head coach: Steve Schimpeler 2015-16 record: 24-3, 14-0 5A Jeffco League Players to watch: Joe Miks, Sr., G; Mike Vrabel, Sr., G; Alex Beckley, Sr., PG; Titus Reed, Sr., F, Lucas St. Germain, Sr., G.
LAKEWOOD — Tyler Callahan hunched down at the 25-yard line. One last time, the Columbine senior was soaking in the atmosphere at Jefferson County Stadium. It wasn’t the way he was hoping his Rebels would end it — a 42-21 defeat to top-seeded Pomona on Nov. 18 in the 5A state quarterfinals — but it was the reality of the situation.
Ben Frenette rushed for 132 yards and three touchdowns and Dalton Keene and Colton Arne added a score each as second-seeded Chatfield countinued its magical season with a 36-28 road win against Fruita Monument at Stocker Stadium in Grand Junction on Nov. 12.
With the victory, the Chargers (11-1) advanced to the 4A state semifinals where they’ll play host to No. 3 Pine Creek (10-2) on Nov. 18 at Jeffco Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. in Lakewood.