Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Hailie Johnson

Turnovers spell doom for Niwot


October 24, 2018

John Matthews

Junior Eric Ruiz (9) carries the ball for Niwot in the Cougars’ loss to Northridge on Oct. 18.

The Cougars traveled to Greeley on Friday, Oct. 19, ready to get back into the win column against the 0-7 Northridge Grizzlies.

It was a well-played game by both teams, but Niwot lost a late lead thanks to turnovers, and fell to the Grizzlies 14-12.

The Cougars were ahead 12-8 with three minutes left in the fourth quarter, when Niwot's sophomore quarterback Ayden Bartko threw a tough interception to give the Northridge the ball back and another chance to score. The Grizzlies took advantage and drove the ball down the field, ending with a go-ahead touchdown.

Down by two, Niwot got the ball back with a minute left in the game, and drove all the way back down the field. Unfortunately, Bartko threw another interception to end the game.

Sadly, this was a tough loss for the seniors in their final away game.

John Matthews

Quarterback Ayden Bartko (12) drops back to pass in Niwot’s loss to Northridge on Oct. 18.

Bartko attempted 15 passes on the night, and completed nine for 90 yards, including a touchdown to junior Jarrett Noterman, and two interceptions. On the ground, Niwot rushers had 40 carries for 119 yards and one TD, from junior Eric Ruiz, his second of the season. Junior Liam Flanagan went over the 100-yard mark for the third time this season, going 104 yards on 24 carries, his longest for 21 yards.

The Cougar defense had 42 solo tackles, including one for a loss from senior Lucas Steiner. On special teams, Niwot punted twice for 82 yards total, with the longest punt being 62 yards. Unfortunately, a miscue on the snap marred Niwot kicker Josh Palomares’ extra point attempt.

With the loss, Niwot is 3-5 with two games left in the season. Up next is Fort Morgan at home on Oct. 25


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