Boulder City was seeking its first win in division play when it took on Chaparral on Friday night. After the Eagles took an early 7-0 lead, the outcome looked promising.
That is, until quarterback Andrew Solis and the Cowboys rattled off 65 unanswered points to blister Boulder City 65-7 during Chaparral’s homecoming game.
“We came out strong defensively, stopping the run early,” head coach Chris Morelli said. “We were able to put the first score up, which is great, but once they started passing, they found our Achilles’ heel.”
The Eagles (1-6, 0-4) came out of the gates early, as quarterback Austin Wishard hit Zac Murphy on a 28-yard pass to open up the scoring.
After Chaparral (5-2, 3-1) stormed back to take a 21-7 lead, Boulder City had a chance to cut the deficit and score before the end of the first half.
A missed pass interference call, however, shifted the momentum of the Eagles’ drive, and after Boulder City was forced to punt, the Cowboys scored on a 65-yard touchdown from Solis to Casey Acosta with 19 seconds remaining.
From that point forward, Boulder City wasn’t able to generate anything offensively. The Eagles abandoned a passing game that saw the team’s only score, finishing with 35 total passing yards.
“We don’t match up athletically with just about every team in our division,” Morelli said. “We can’t afford to stop the clock, so we try to get a (pass) play in here and there.”
The running game racked up 119 total yards, but wasn’t able to find the end zone. Devin Reese, the defensive end-turned-running back who rushed for 100 yards in last week’s game, did not play (coach’s decision).
Defensively, opposing running backs have given Boulder City fits all season, but it was the Cowboys’ quarterback that had a huge night.
Solis finished the game 7-of-11 passing for 254 yards and five touchdowns, four of which were 50-plus yards. Running back Richard Nelson finished with five carries for 73 yards and three total touchdowns.
Injuries continue to be an issue for Boulder City, which, according to Morelli, now has about 20 players on its varsity roster.
For reference, a team needs 22 players minimum in order to assure no athlete is playing on both sides of the ball, and that’s not including special teams.
The road doesn’t get any easier, as Moapa Valley rolls into town on Friday. The Pirates are on a four-game winning streak, including back-to-back routs of Del Sol and Virgin Valley.
Moapa comes into the game with a pesky defense that’s averaging 1.5 sacks as well as one forced fumble. On offense, the Pirates’ running game is overwhelming, rushing for 212.7 yards and three touchdowns per game.
Moapa Valley and Boulder City share three common opponents in Del Sol, Sunrise Mountain and Desert Pines. The Pirates are 2-1 in those games, while the Eagles are 0-3.
The players have been visibly frustrated during the Eagles’ five-game losing streak in which they’ve been outscored 222-42.
In order to salvage the final two games of the year, Morelli says the players need to remember that in the end, it’s just a game.
“They still have to enjoy this game,” Morelli said. “As tough as it is, whatever position they’re playing, whoever we’re playing, they just have to have fun. The second they stop having fun playing, then that becomes a problem.”
Contact reporter Randy Faehnrich at Rfaehnrich@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow him on Twitter @RandyFaehnrich