Montrose High School Football Team Heads to Pueblo for State Semifinals
MONTROSE – The Montrose High School football team finished undefeated at home this season, thumping Denver South 47-27 at Saturday’s game. For the team's senior players especially, it was a great finale to years of playing in front of a home crowd.
"We wanted to finish undefeated at home. It feels good to win our last game on this field," said senior Angelo Youngren, who rushed for 120 yards on 13 carries and three touchdowns.
Indians head coach Todd Casebeir celebrated with the team after the game, chanting: "One, two, three, semifinals," before breaking to deliver post-game interviews. Assistant coach Jim Scarry, who could barely contain himself, skipped up to Casebier and yelled, "Road trip! We are absolutely taking this show on the road."
The team (11-1) travels to Pueblo to play in the semifinals Saturday, at 1 p.m. (with a radio broadcast from KUBC-AM 580).
The Denver South Rebels (9-3) worked hard to intimidate Montrose in pre-game warm-ups, gathering at midfield to taunt the Indians with loud screaming.
In the locker room, Casebeir told the team to look past the hecklers, and play within themselves. "Teams win championships, not individuals,” he said. “Let's get after it and enjoy this."
The Indians came out and controlled the line of scrimmage on both offense and defense, forcing the Rebels from their stout 300-yard-per-game rushing attack to a passing game with only limited success.
Montrose ran out to an early 13-0 lead after the first quarter, with touchdowns from Youngren and Mike Rocha. In the second quarter, Youngren scored two more touchdowns, and quarterback Kameron DeVincentis hit Peter Shearer in stride for a 35-yard touchdown pass. By halftime, the Indians’ lead was 33-6, and the Rebels were beginning to walk off the field with their heads down.
"It was as good as our defense has played all year," Casebeir said.
The coach said the team "really used their technique" to outplay and out-muscle Denver South players who appeared larger. Three Rebel linemen were listed at over 300 pounds.
"They really liked going against that big line,” Casebeir said of the team. “What we have been telling them all year is to get off the ball quicker, and outplay the man on the other side.”
Senior Connor Huskey, who plays both offense and defense, walked off the field Saturday tired, muddied and with a twisted ankle.
"We played tough, and everyone did their job," Huskey said.
Huskey, whose play at linebacker Saturday was one of team’s keys for controlling the Rebels' offensive gains, had several tackles as well as a sack of star Denver South quarterback Tyson Purifoy.
"I love it, I've loved it my whole life," Huskey said of playing linebacker. "I've been playing it since seventh grade. It's my love.”
Youngren said he looks forward to playing the Pueblo South Colts; his cousin Isaiah Pannunzio is on that team.
Rocha finished with 78 yards on 18 carries and two touchdowns. DeVincentis finished with three completions on seven attempts for 90 yards and one touchdown, and Irah Wooten hauled in a touchdown pass from Angelo Youngren from 26-yards in the third quarter.
Rocha scored the final Indians’ touchdown, a 32-yard run through the Rebel defense.
The Indians are using this week to prepare for the semifinals, a position that has taken Casebeir nine years to reach with the team.
"I can't even wrap my head around it,” Huskey said. “To think we got this far just blows my mind.”