GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) The Southwestern League's biggest duel took place Thursday night between 5A's tenth-ranked Grand Junction Tigers and 4A's top-ranked Montrose Indians. In the end, the Tigers came out with a 36-33 victory, serving the Indians their first loss of the season.
Montrose had all momentum on their side early in the first quarter. They'd put out a quick touchdown and follow it with an interception that would lead a 13-0 lead.
If Grand Junction was to respond, it had to be on their next drive. They did just that. Tyler Heinsma handed the ball off to Austin Lewis for a 26-yard carry straight into the endzone. They'd keep Montrose silent and then add another seven for a 14-13 lead early in the second quarter.
When the Indians drove into Tiger terriroty, they reached a third down scenario. Tanner Griffin sacked Kameron DeVincentis for a loss, but a 15-yard penalty was called for unsportsmanlike conduct. The visitors would make use of that and take the lead right back. By the time the first half ended, Grand Junction had pulled ahead 21-20.
It continued to be a back-and-forth affair, but the Tigers seemed to hold the upper-hand in the second half. In the fourth, Jack Parsons made a big catch at the one-yard line, bringing it in for a 36-29 lead.
Meanwhile their defense really stepped to the plate, and Griffin turned his game around, coming up big for his team. He'd strip the ball late in the fourth and recover the fumble - stopping the Indians from a touchdown.
Grand Junction ends up with the 3-point victory, 36-33. They improve to 6-2, Montrose drops to 7-1.