Disappointing season ends with 40-21 loss to Skyline
By Dan Karpiel
The frustrating 2010 season for the Berthoud High football team ended in disappointing fashion Friday night at Max Marr Field. The Spartans dropped their final game of the season 40-21 to the Skyline Falcons. The Spartans finished with the season with a 3-7 record and were 0-5 in 3A Northern conference play.
Berthoud was able to keep the score close throughout most of the game, giving the hometown fans plenty to cheer about in the final 48 minutes of the season. The Spartans’ first drive of the game was their best. Driving 80 yards in 2:29, Berthoud put the first points on the board thanks to a 37-yard touchdown run from senior and team captain Steven Fiske. Junior Brok Diffendaffer’s extra point kick split the uprights and Berthoud took an early 7-0 lead.
While Berthoud’s offense looked to be firing on all cylinders after the 80-yard touchdown drive, the Spartan defense had difficulty containing Skyline. The Falcon offense struggled to pass the football but diminutive Falcon halfback Trey Harrison used his speed and quickness to frequently elude Berthoud defenders. The junior tailback was often able to pick up just enough yardage to sustain Skyline drives and slowly chip away at the Berthoud defense. Skyline would regularly line up in three and four wide receiver sets, spreading out the Spartan defense and giving Falcon ball carriers plenty of daylight in the middle of the field. With 8:46 remaining in the second quarter, Skyline quarterback Matt Wilson ran up the middle of the Berthoud defense for a score. The touchdown gave Skyline a 12-7 lead, a lead they would not surrender.
The Spartan defense would come up big on their first series of the second half. After forcing Skyline into a third and 20 situation, junior linebacker Cory Ellis and senior defensive lineman Zackary Smith sacked Wilson for a big loss and forced Skyline to punt. Perhaps inspired by the impressive series turned in by their defense, the Spartan offense took possession and marched 60 yards in 1:12 for a touchdown. The score would come on a 5 yard run from junior quarterback Zach Ruebesam. Ruebesam then completed a pass to senior receiver Logan Shuster for the two-point conversion, cutting the Skyline lead to 18-15 with 7:12 remaining in the third quarter.
After surrendering a Falcon touchdown with the clock reading 3:33 in the third quarter, Berthoud’s offense would answer back. The Spartan offense would drive 55 yards in 3:17, scoring their final touchdown of the season on four yard Fraser run. Berthoud was able to convert on a fourth-and-one thanks to a Ruebesam to Ellis pass play to sustain their drive. After cutting the Skyline lead to 26-21 going into the fourth quarter, Berthoud was unable to keep the Falcons out of end zone. Skyline would go on to score twice in quarter to make it a 40-21 final score.
Friday night’s contest was the final high school football game for twelve Berthoud High seniors. Fraser said after the game that the leadership of the dozen graduating seniors will be missed. The Spartans are fortunate to have both Fraser, the Spartan’s leading rusher, and Ruebesam returning next season along with Cory Ellis on defense.