Following a week where nearly every football squad in the valley was at home, this will be a weekend where they all go on the road. Centauri will play host to rival Monte Vista on Friday.
The Centauri Falcons (4-1) have recovered well from their loss on Sept. 26 to 2A Pagosa Springs adding three straight wins, one of which, a top-ten meeting with Buena Vista that the Falcons took easily 37-0.
The Falcons boast a stingy defense allowing just 7.2 points per game and winning three games by shutout. Not to mention holding the No. 5 spot in the Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA) coaches’ poll from Oct. 7th.
Monte Vista (1-4) has had a difficult start to the season dropping four straight. The Pirates took their opportunity to end the skid this past Friday punishing Dolores by a score of 45-6.
Historically, the series between the Falcons and Pirates belongs to Centauri. The Falcons own an 8-3 record over the past decade. Last year the Falcons won a 45-8 game in Monte Vista.
When Centauri has the ball, they tend to lean on the running game, rushing at a 65 to 35 split in three games worth of recorded stats. In that time, the work goes to sophomore Mason Claunch and senior Taj Cornum. The Centauri boys combine for 459 yards and 5 touchdowns. When Centauri goes to the air it’s in the hands of senior Eric Maez. Maez is 31-of-45 for 417 yards and six touchdowns in that same 3-game span. Maez’s most efficient receiver is Baron Holman with 8 catches for 139 yards and two touchdowns.
Offensively, Monte Vista is similarly slanted to the run at a 61 to 39 split. Senior Kaidon Wenta has had success as the team’s leading rusher with 639 yards for 7 touchdowns. As quarterback Wenta is also productive with 498 yards and 7 more touchdowns. Wenta’s favorite target in the passing game is Jarren Chavez, who has a team-leading 20 receptions for 327 yards and 5 touchdowns.
Monte Vista and Centauri will meet Friday night in La Jara with a 7 p.m. start time.
Also home this Friday are Mountain Valley-Moffat and Center. In the 6-Man Class Mtn. Valley-Moffat (2-3) is a year removed from their undefeated regular season a year ago. Facing tough losses against opponents Cheraw, North Parka and Cotopaxi they will have an opportunity to break even this weekend when they host the Rating Percentage Index (RPI) 17th ranked team. Mt. Valley currently holds the No. 20 spot. Kickoff is slated for 3 p.m. on Friday the 11th.
Center (3-2) suffered their second loss of the season when No. 5 Centauri came to town. The Vikings will get a nice reprieve this weekend when they host Ignacio (0-4) on Friday. By RPI, Ignacio (4-0) is ranked 39th of 40 teams in the 1A class. Center is in good shape to finish the season with at least 6 wins. Counting Ignacio, their remaining opponents have a combined 2-17 record. The Vikings just need to be sure not to overlook Monte Vista, who packs more of a punch than their 1-4 record might suggest.