Columbine runs over Arvada West, advances to 5A quarterfinals – The De…

ARVADA — Tried, tested and true worked wonders for Columbine in the second round of the Class 5A state playoffs.

employing their strength ground game, the Rebels beat Arvada West 38-21 Thursday night at North Area Athletic complicate. Columbine avenged a last-second, 24-21 loss to A-West earlier in the season.

“We’re healthy now,” coach Andy Lowry said. “The first time we played them we shot ourselves in the foot, but now we are healthy. That’s not an excuse, but we were so beat up for like three or four weeks straight.”

Senior running back Seth Cromwell bulldozed his way to 157 yards rushing with three touchdowns on 26 carries. Tyree Hayes-Trust, his junior backfield mate, additional 103 yards on 23 carries.

“We dominated, so give credit to the guys up front,” said Cromwell, who is finally getting healthy after struggling with an ankle injury.

The Rebels (9-3) progressive to next week’s quarterfinals where they will confront the winner of Friday night’s game between top-seeded Valor Christian and No. 16 Fort Collins. Before Covid-19 hit, Columbine had reached the 5A quarterfinals every year between 2015-19.

Arvada West’s offense, behind flashes of talent from freshman quarterback Vince Vigil, at the minimum early on, had its moments. But the Wildcats rarely had possession of the ball after the first quarter. Columbine’s clock-eating ground game, combined with three Vigil interceptions, saw to that.

A patented no-frills excursion gave the Rebels a 21-14 rule at halftime and also gave them control for the rest of the game.

With their offensive line slugging open big holes, the Rebels drove 80 yards in 13 plays, with all of the yards coming on the ground. Cromwell and Hayes-Trusty took turns busting up the A-West defense. Cromwell carried the ball seven times for 52 yards, including a 3-yard TD drop. Hayes-Trusty had six carries for 28 yards.

“A excursion like that takes a lot of heart and a lot of stamina and our guys just bowled them over the whole game,” Cromwell said.

From the start of the third quarter by midway by the fourth, Columbine had the ball for 33 plays to just four for the Wildcats.

“Our offense was a good defense tonight,” quipped Lowry.

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