It was picture perfect evening for football in Elwood on Thursday evening as the #5 seeded Hi-Line Bulls and the #12 seeded Warriors of Arapahoe battled in the first round of the Class D1 Playoffs. These two teams faced one another earlier this season, September 30th to be exact and it was Hi-Line who won 60-28.
In this playoff matchup, it was the Bulls who won again, this time 52-16. In the first quarter, it was a fight. Arapahoe had chances on their first couple of drives but penalties and some errors forced them to give the ball to Hi-Line. The Bulls got things started at the 2:15 to go in the first quarter as Ryker Evans punched it in from inside 10 yards to make it 6-0.
That's what the score read at the end of the first quarter.
In the second period, Hi-Line distanced themselves from Arapahoe as they scored a pair of touchdowns. At the 7:10 mark, quarterback Zach Whittaker from six yards out to make if 14-0. Then at the 1:12 mark in the second period, Evans scored once again from a yard out to push the lead to 22-0 heading into halftime.
In the third quarter, Hi-Line had the ball to start the half and the Warriors stopped the Bulls. Arapahoe though was unable to do anything with the next possession as they fumbled the ball. The Bulls made quick work off the turnover and scored again to make it 30-0. The Warriors though, came back strong as they scored at the 4:16 point in the third quarter as Grayson Koller was able to scamper in from 12 yards out to make the gap smaller at 30-8.
That remained the score going into the fourth period.
To start the fourth quarter, Arapahoe had a golden opportunity to bring the deficit to within two scores after forcing a Bull turnover. But the Warriors turned it over on downs and the Bulls made a splash on a 57-yard touchdown run to advance the lead to 38-8. Arapahoe again had the ball, and then fumbled the ball and Hi-Line scored, this time a 36-yard touchdown run from Treyton Evans.
Arapahoe was able to counter as Rafe Hill scored on a five yard run and the two point conversion was good.
The Bulls scored one more time to round out the game, this time a five yard pass from Whittaker to Evans making it 52-16.
The Bulls were led by Ryker Evans and his 97 yards rushing and three touchdowns. Arapahoe leaned on Rafe Hill as he had 100 yards and a touchdown.
Head coach of the Warriors Dustin Kronhofman had these comments after the game.
Arapahoe ends the season at 4-5. Hi-Line is now 8-1 and is the #9 seed and will play #8 seeded Elmwood-Murdock in the second round of the Class D1 State Playoffs.