No. 1 Cherry Creek (2-0) vs. Chatfield (2-0)
When/where: 7 p.m. Friday at Jeffco Stadium
Last meeting: Cherry Creek 28, vs. Chatfield 5, Sept. 9, 2022
The Bruins’ quest for a 5A five-peat hits the road for the first time this fall with a date against the Chargers at Jeffco Stadium. If Chatfield has one advantage — other than playing at home — it’s the fact that they’ve had two weeks to prepare for a Creek program that hasn’t lost a regular-season nonleague game in six years. The key for the Creek defense: finding a way to contain junior Brock Narva, who had 176 yards and two touchdowns on 27 touches against Cherokee Trail his last time out.
No. 2 Regis Jesuit (2-0) vs. No. 7 Arapahoe (2-0)
When/where: 7 p.m. Friday at LPS Stadium
Last meeting: Regis Jesuit 23, vs. Arapahoe 10, Sept. 9, 2022
After knocking off a pair of heavyweights (Valor Christian and Washington’s Kennedy Catholic) by three points apiece, Regis locks horns with one of the stingiest defenses in the state. With ironman senior Charlie Eckhardt doing his best Travis Hunter impression (205 total yards, 10 tackles, one interception), Arapahoe has limited opponents to 16 points through two games. The degree of difficulty goes up a notch this week, however, with Regis senior Albert Medina (340 yards, 5 TDs) the second most productive rusher in 5A through two weeks.
No. 9 Fairview (2-0) vs. No. 8 Valor Christian (0-2)
When/where: 7 p.m. Friday at Valor Stadium
Last meeting: Valor Christian 38, at Fairview 15, Sept. 9, 2022
Another week, another ranked opponent for Valor, which gets its first home game after visiting top-five foes Regis and Pine Creek. Fairview steamrolled through its first two games, outscoring Highlands Ranch and Lakewood by a combined 93-3 margin. Junior Jordan Rechel (383 all-purpose yards, 5 TDs) has been as advertised, and the always-prolific Fairview passing game is averaging 295 yards/game. Valor has yet to get its rushing attack (2.1 yards/carry) going, and things get no easier against a Fairview defense that’s yet to surrender a touchdown.
Rock Canyon (2-0) vs. Denver East (3-0)
When/where: 7 p.m. Friday at All City Stadium
Last meeting: Rock Canyon 37, vs. Denver East 15, Sept. 8, 2022
A week after taking down crosstown rival Denver South, East goes up another level with a game against a physical Rock Canyon team. The Jaguars are averaging 214 rushing yards/game behind juniors Tyler Meyer (34 carries, 261 yards) and Owen Arnold (16-114), and have allowed just one touchdown while registering 17 tackles for loss. The Angels have their own two-headed junior backfield in Sean Campbell (42-321) and Elijah West Duah (40-261), and a defense that’s got 44 tackles for loss (!) and 14 turnovers (!) through three games.
No. 4 Erie (1-1) vs. No. 5 Montrose (1-1)
When/where: 7 p.m. Friday at Montrose
Last meeting: Montrose 49, at Erie 40, Sept. 9, 2022
Two of 4A’s premier programs meet for the third time in three years, with each already winning once. Both Montrose and Erie are coming off dominant offensive showings, with the former putting 58 on the board in a blowout win over Fruita Monument and the latter scoring 56 in a win over Mullen. It would be safe to expect more of the same after these two combined for 49 points in Erie last season. The two stars to watch: All-Colorado running back Blake Griffin for Montrose and All-Colorado quarterback Blake Barnett for Erie.
Fountain Fort-Carson (2-0) vs. No. 7 Pueblo West (3-0)
When/where: 7 p.m. Friday at CSU-Pueblo ThunderBowl
Last meeting: FFC 40, vs. Pueblo West 0, Sept. 9, 2022
A pair of high-powered offenses get a worthy stage with Pueblo West hosting 5A Fountain-Fort Carson in the ThunderBowl. While West is led by all-everything quarterback Gavin Lockett (727 total yards, 12 TDs), the Trojans have not one, but two rushers averaging more than 100 yards/game in senior Mathias Price (37 carries, 417 yards) and junior Terence Morris (8-222). If the Cyclones can put the clamps down on those two, the program’s third 4-0 start since 2017 awaits.
No. 8 Dakota Ridge (1-1) vs. No. 9 Mesa Ridge (1-1)
When/where: 1 p.m. Saturday at C.A. Foster Stadium
Last meeting: Dakota Ridge 56, vs. Mesa Ridge 30, Sept. 9, 2022
A week after falling to top-ranked Palmer Ridge, the Grizzlies welcome another upper-echelon 4A program in Dakota Ridge. The Eagles flew to Orlando, Fla., last week and dominated East River, 40-0, in their third shutout since 2019. Now comes a matchup with dual threat junior quarterback Bryce Riehl (178.5 total yards/game) and senior running back Isaiah Jones (115). With UNC commit Blake Palladino (162.5) taking snaps on the other side, expect plenty of fireworks.
Riverdale Ridge (2-0) vs. No. 8 Northfield (1-0)
When/where: 4 p.m. Friday at All City Stadium
Last meeting: Northfield 27, at Riverdale Ridge 11, Sept. 8, 2022
Two fledgling programs looking to establish themselves as perennial powers kick off a prep football doubleheader at All City Stadium featuring only unbeaten teams. Riverdale Ridge is 2-0 for the second straight season behind a balanced attack led by junior quarterback Isaiah Medina (375 yards, 6 TDs on 24-of-32 passing) and sophomore back Diego Galvan (29 carries, 200 yards). A Northfield defense that’s yet to surrender a point should offer plenty of resistance.
All stats taken from maxpreps.com.
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