Football shut out in opener
Bayfield crushes Dolores 43-0
Joel Priest/Pine River Times
Before playing the Dolores Bears on Sept. 6, the Bayfield Wolverines' football team had won 23 consecutive games at home, a streak that stretched back to the 2008 season. After a 43-0 demolishment of the Bears in Bayfield, the streak now stands at 24.
After receiving the ball on the opening kickoff, the Bears immediately found themselves in a hole, fumbling on their first play from scrimmage. The turnover quickly led to a Wolverines touchdown, and soon after, following a second fumble by the Bears, Bayfield scored again.
"Right from the beginning, we had our backs to the wall," said Bears' head coach, Chris Trusler. "I don't know if it was first-game jitters or what, but right in the beginning, small mental errors got things screwed up a little bit."
After briefly weathering the Wolverines' storm, the Bears defense again surrendered a touchdown and after yielding a safety in the second quarter, trailed 22-0 at the half.
"We made a lot of mental errors," said Trusler. "We kind of shot ourselves in the foot a little bit."
In the second half, things continued going down hill for the Bears, and when the game finally ended, the score stood at 43-0.
"We knew that Bayfield was going to be a tough team," said Trusler. "They have almost twice the number of players and bigger kids overall, and that is a challenge in itself. We've got a really young team."
Bears players who played well during the loss included linebackers Ethan Upton, Deano Valdez and Evan Moore.
"Those three, on defense, definitely led the way. They were in and out of every tackle on the field," said Trusler.
Unfortunately for the Bears, things do not figure to get any easier this week, as the team will travel to meet the defending 1A state champion Cedaredge Bruins on the road, Sept. 13.
The game figures to be especially emotional in light of a recent camping accident that resulted in the death of Cedaredge's star running back Reid Gates because of carbon-monoxide poisoning. Two other Cedaredge players remain hospitalized.
"I'm trying to get some decals ordered in remembrance of (Gates)," said Trusler. "Our hearts go out to everyone involved."