Paonia's three senior running backs combined for three offensive touchdowns and a touchdown on special teams in the Eagles' 41-0 win over Olathe Friday night at Dan Lawrence Field. The win came despite four turnovers.
A first-possession, 48-yard touchdown run by Anthony Felice set the tone for the game. A 51-yard run by Felice also set up the first of two touchdowns by Jesse Burns, a two-yard carry with 8:31 remaining in the first half.
On the ensuing kickoff, David Lozano sent the ball deep into Olathe territory. Pirate Elias Ramirez grabbed the ball from inside the 5-yard line and lost possession on a hard hit by Alex Lozano. Sackett Chesnik recovered the ball and scored the touchdown, with David Lozano's PAT putting the Eagles ahead, 21-0.
Paonia received the second-half kickoff, then capped a 72-yard drive on a touchdown run by Felice. With four minutes to go in the third, Neal scored on first and goal, and Lozano's PAT put Paonia up, 34-0.
On the ensuing kickoff, Pirate Cesar Suarez ran the ball back for a touchdown, but the play was negated by a holding penalty at midfield. Neal scored the final touchdown on a second-and-goal play to start the running clock with 4:30 remaining in the game.
The win was Paonia's fourth shut-out of the season and its third 41-0 shutout. Both of Paonia's losses were also by shutout.
The win bumped the Eagles up to No. 8 in Class 1A RPI rankings. Paonia is also in first place in 1A Western Slope conference standings.
The Eagles face Meeker this Friday. The Cowboys are 3-2 overall, undefeated in conference play, and 13th in RPI rankings. On Friday the Cowboys mowed over Cedaredge, 34-0, and a week earlier opened conference play with a 36-7 win over Grand Valley.