Brad Roberts carries Ralston Valley’s offense, defense pitches shutout against Cherokee Trail

ARVADA — Ralston Valley made quick work of Cherokee Trail with onslaughts of ground and pound and a resounding defensive effort.

Brad Roberts’ continuous brute physicality punished white jerseys in his path and the senior captain was rewarded with three touchdowns as No. 6 Ralston Valley throttled No. 11 Cherokee Trail 52-0 Friday night in the second round of the Class 5A state playoffs.

“We executed well,” Roberts said. “Our defense had great plays, several turnovers — Thomas Harries with a few picks and Ben Schneider with some big hits. Our offense came out ready to go, fast tempo, especially in the third quarter when we started ground-and-pounding.”

Ben Takata and Chase Wilson underscored Roberts’ marquee performance in the Mustangs’ first game of the postseason after a first-round bye.

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Takata made marks on both sides of the ball. His rushing touchdown just before halftime put the Mustangs up 24-0 by the break. His interception sparked Ralston Valley’s first scoring drive.

Cherokee Trail drove to Ralston Valley’s 25-yard line on the game’s opening possession but Takata intercepted sophomore quarterback Jayden LaVigne on a ball forced into triple coverage. Takata took the pick from the 10-yard line to the Ralston Valley 43. Four plays later, Roberts was in the end zone from 3 yards out for a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter. Wilson set the table for that first score with a 30-yard run and capped the opening drive of the second half with a rushing touchdown for a 31-0 advantage.

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Roberts’ most barbaric score, his second, came halfway through the second quarter when he carried a trio of Cougars the final few yards to the goal line.

“I knew our guys prepared well but I was not expecting 52-0,” Ralston Valley coach Matt Loyd said. “Defensively we played well, gave us some good field position and the offense took advantage of it.”

Ralston Valley faces the winner of No. 3 Cherry Creek and No. 14 Castle View, which play Friday at 7 p.m. at the Stutler Bowl.

“To be honest I have not seen either one of them (to this point),” Loyd said of his team’s next opponent. “We’ll get a chance to see them, see what …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – Sports


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