by Walter & Becky Bird
Football: Monticello v. Altamont
Anticipation was high on September 15, as the Monticello High School Buckaroos took to their home field for the first time this season against their non-region foe, the Altamont Longhorns.
It also happened to be Homecoming, so the Bucks were filled with the hope that their recent losing skid would end that night.
The first quarter started well for the Bucks as they took the early lead with a two-yard scoring run by Thomas Anderson with 4:33 to go in the quarter. The kick failed. Altamont answered with a score of its own, and the Bucks trailed by a point after one quarter.
Despite being sacked three times in the quarter and a punt, Monticello put another score on the board with just 0:28 seconds to go in the half when Paxton Lewis snagged a Spencer Knudsen pass and raced 38 yards for the score.
Cedar English’s kick was good, and the Bucks had to feel good going into the locker room with the 13-7 halftime lead.
The third quarter found Monticello unable to get much going offensively and did not get another score. Altamont was also blanked in the quarter.
This set up a tense fourth quarter as only one score separated the two teams.
In the final period, the Bucks tried to get things going on offense but stalled. In its last possession Monticello turned the ball over and never got it back as the time slipped away.
Altamont scored a TD with 7:05 left in the quarter and added a two-point conversion and then held on to take the 15-13 victory.
Offensively, Monticello had a great passing game with Spencer Knudsen and Mark Beh combining for 207 yards on 15-27 passing attempts. Except for Lewis’ score, the receivers just couldn’t slip behind the defense to get it into the end zone.
Max Hedglin was efficient catching four balls for 77 yards – one catch going for 42. However, the Buck’s rushing attack only managed 51 total yards on 31 carries for a meager 1.6 yards per carry.
Thomas Anderson picked up 19 yards on seven carries. Weston Nebeker carried it eleven times for twelve yards. Max Hedglin had one nice run for 15 positive yards.
Defensively, the Bucks played hard, giving up only 88 pass yards and shut-out the Longhorns in the middle two quarters.
However, Altamont was able to grind out the game, rushing the ball 45 times for 170 yards and scored its two book-end TDs.
Monticello (1-4) will host Kirtland Central, NM (3-0) on Friday, September 22 at 7 p.m.
XC – Southwest Sunset XC Classic in Durango
Friday night found all Monticello cross country teams at the Hillcrest Golf Course in Durango, CO for the Southwest Sunset Cross Country Classic.
This race is a mix of junior high, high school, and community races in an evening setting for the benefit of the Durango cross country programs.
In the first race of the evening at 7 p.m., the Monticello JH girls showed nicely with a third place team finish as Adri Bird took the overall win with a course record time of 11:26 in the two mile event.
Teammates Lily Long placed sixth in 12:51 and Lidia Chamberlain placed 27th in 13:57 to pace the team. Millie Morrison (14:04), Katelyn Pehrson (15:05), and Jacy Montague (15:08) also ran well in the field of 111 girls.
The Buck’s Junior High boys team took to the course at 7:30 p.m. and finished in sixth place. Curtis Bunker lead the team with a 16th place finish and a time of in 12:36. Close behind was Bailey Walker who placed 19th in 12:50.
Jalen Bradford improved greatly from his last race to place 22nd with a time of 12:54. Treydon Harris finished well in 13:05. Jacob Johnson (14:13) and Jessie Pettit (14:21) crossed the line consecutively to finish strong.
The Buckaroo High School girls ran as a varsity team against the large 166 girl field. Running in the dark, aided only by lights periodically placed along the course, the girls finished 15th.
Covered in glow sticks, Maddie Freestone had a good meet and finished 22nd individually, covering the 5K in 21:04. Serra St. Clair came in 39th with a time of 22:35. She was followed by Makayla Sheeran (25:00), Kaitlin Morrison (31:20) and Jessica Begay (32:01) finishing in her best time of the season.
By the time the Monticello boys hit the course, it was DARK:30! 209 runners toed the line and went off into the night with the gun. The boys had their best overall team meet of the season and placed eighth.
In the fast paced race, Adam Bunker finished with the Bucks top spot, taking 21st overall with a time of 17:20. Continuing his steady climb up the team ladder, Hyrum Johnson finished in 40th in 17:50.
Teammate Alan Pettit finished right behind Johnson with a nice time of 17:54. Lucas Hatch improved again this week with a time of 18:18. Ryan Bird was the last scoring runner coming in at 18:20. Brother Dylan Bird snuck across in 18:53, with Justus Robison (19:03), Bowden Hunter (19:57), Zac Musselman (19:58), and Britton Brewer (20:11) not far behind.
Joseph Morrison (21:11), Dawson Atwood (24:04), Robert Musselman (29:53), and a hobbling Taw Robinson finished the course in 30:05.
The Monticello cross country teams run on September 19 at the Emery XC meet and again on Saturday, September 23 in Pagosa Springs, CO at the Pagosa Springs Cross Country Challenge.
On Wednesday, for the Homecoming game, the varsity Buckaroo girls took to the volleyball court against Grand. They played what coaches said was “a long, hard fight” but fell 16-25, 31-29, 24-26, 25-15, and 12-15 to slip to 5-6 on the season.
In JV action, the Bucks lost in four games. The C team girls lost the first two games, but rebounded to win the next three!
Thursday found the varsity girls in Bicknell playing Wayne. The Monticello girls rebounded, taking all three sets (25-11, 25-15, and 25-21) to get back to .500 at 6-6, but improved to 2-0 in region play.
The JV and C teams also won in three straight games!
This week, the JV girls take the long ride to Navajo Mountain to take on the Jaguars. The Varsity has some time off until they take the trip south to Kayenta Friday and Saturday, September 22-23, for the Kayenta Tournament.