Eagles’ wings clipped in post season by Big Horn Rams

Big Horn's Dylan Greenough-Groom (19) makes the catch Friday, Nov. 4, while LHS Xander Lyman tries to stop the completion of the pass. SHERIDAN PRESS PHOTO

BIG HORN — The LHS Eagles played an intense defensive game last week on Friday against the Big Horn Rams, but the Rams took the win, 7-0 on the Rams turf.

The Eagles were stopped on their march to this week’s 2A championship game due to the loss and also stopped in claiming another consecutive championship trophy.

Both teams were hot on defense, holding the other from scoring, but an early touchdown by the Rams put seven points on the board in this semi final game, which the Eagles couldn’t meet or pass. The game ended 7-0 sending the Rams to today’s championship game against the Lovell Bulldogs, a team that had been expected to step on the turf for the final game of the season.

The Rams hold a record of 9-1, with their only loss to Lovell. The Bulldogs come into the non-league game with a 10-0 record. The Rams are back in the title game for the first time since 2019.

The Eagles ended the season with an 8-3 record. They entered last week’s game with the #1 ranked rushing offense in 2A and the #3 ranked defense in the classification.

The game against the Rams was played with a backdrop of the mountains, green field on which the snow had been plowed off leaving snow around the edge of the field, sunshine and crisp air making for a great day for football.

The Rams elected to kick off so the Eagles had the first possession of the game. The Eagles brought the ball down from the 30-yard line, but it was moved back to the 26-yard line of the Eagles. Carter Bradshaw tried to gain yardage from the middle, but Rams Mccool sacked Bradshaw behind the line of scrimmage. Four downs, and the ball was turned over to the Rams, who moved it to their own 38-yard line. The Rams made a first-and-10 as they edged up to the 50-yard line. A fumble by the Rams, recovered by the Eagles gave the Eagles possession of the ball with 8:38 left in the first quarter.

The Eagles moved up the field deep into Ram territory, but were pushed out of bounds on the 13-yard line. So close to a first-and-10 and also close to the end zone, the Eagles used the fourth down to try to gain the slight distance for the first down. The Eagles dropped the ball on a handoff, and the Rams gained control of the ball. The Rams made a first-and 10 on their 36-yard line. They tried moving on up through the middle, but a tackle by Xander Lyman stopped the forward motion.

The first quarter had been an extreme defense by both teams, stopping the other from making yardage, scoring points, and turning over the ball due to the defense of each other.

The score at the half was 7-0.

In the second half, the Eagles held the Rams on their first possession to a 3rd-and-7. The Rams took to the air, but the Eagles batted the ball down. The Rams had to turn the ball over on downs.

The ball was spotted for the Eagles deep in the Eagles’ territory. Bradshaw had multiple carries and moved the ball up the field. A double-hand off from Nate Brady to Smith resulted in good yardage for the Eagles. The teams traded possession of the ball and the Rams took over on their own 40-yard line. A long pass resulted in the ball being spotted on the 25-yard line of the Eagles with 2:58 left in the third quarter.

A second fumble by the Rams was recovered by the Eagles so they regained possession of the ball on their own 21-yard line.

, the Rams punted. Eagle Gage Neilson returned the punt to the Rams 39-yard line. The Eagles tried to gain yardage by going through the air. Garber intercepted the ball for the Rams with 1:42 left in the game. The clock continued to count down and with less than 35 seconds left in the game, the Rams took a knee.