Colorado #2 and #4 face off on somber night

Earlier in the day on Friday they announced that the body found in a park in Arvada, CO was the body of missing 10 year old Jessica Ridgeway.  The body was found just a few miles away from Ralston Valley and Pomona high schools.  Both schools dedicated the game to Jessica and her family.  There were many purple ribbons all around, Jessica’s favorite color, the Ralston Valley fans released a bunch of purple balloons, and the players on both teams wore a purple sock in her honor.

October 12th, 2012: Ralston Valley Mustang fans release purple balloons in memory of the missing Jessica Ridgeway, who’s body, that was found just a few miles from Ralston Valley High and Pomona High, was positively identified early Friday morning.

The Ralston Valley football players take the field for their game against Pomona. Football players from both teams wore one purple sock in memory of 10 year old Jessica Ridgeway whose body was positively identified earlier in the day.

Wearing a purple sock in memory of Jessica Ridgeway, Pomona Panthers football players take the field for their game against Ralston Valley on Friday night.

Ralston Valley went into this game with a 5-1 record and ranked #2 in the state for 5A football.  Pomona also came in with a 5-1 record, but the previous number one team in the state was now #4 in 5A schools.  This game was also the ROOT Sports Rocky Mountain high school game of the week.  So along with a bunch of photographers, I had to deal with sound dish people, ROOT reporters wandering the sidelines, TV cameramen, and cable pullers, along with a bunch of non football people, school administration, parents, a number of little kids, and more.  It made for a very crowded sideline and made it hard to get good angles or spots to shoot from.

October 12th, 2012: A Ralston Valley running back tries for a first down against Pomona.

Ralston Valley would take an early lead in the 1st, closing the opening quarter with a 9-0 advantage.  With this being a ROOT Sports game, there were a number of TV timeouts, that made the quarters just drag on.

October 12, 2012: A Pomona Panther running back goes for a big gain against Ralston Valley on Friday night.

In the second quarter, Pomona finally got on the board with a touchdown, but was still trailing Ralston Valley 9-7.  After a Ralston Valley 17 yard touchdown pass giving the Mustangs a 16-7 lead. Pomona would score on a 15 yard run to trail by 2, 14-16 going into halftime.

A Ralston Valley wide receiver out jumps a Pomona player in front of a ROOT Sports cameraman for a touchdown Friday night.

It took most of the third quarter for anyone to score.  With about 2 minutes left in the 3rd, Ralston Valley would score on a 3 yard run.  This would give Ralston Valley a 23-14 lead going into the 4th quarter.  Trailing by 9 points, it was a two score deficit that Pomona would have to make up if they wanted to move up in the polls and the standings.

October 12, 2012: A Pomona Panther running back finds open field against Ralston Valley

Early in the 4th, Pomona would strike on a touchdown pass bringing them to within 3 points of the Mustangs, and with a successful 2 point conversion, the Panthers trailed Ralston Valley by only 1 point.

October 12, 2012: A Ralston Valley player tries to break away from a tackle by a Pomona player Friday night

Pomona had a chance, but Ralston Valley would take the ball and score again, giving them a 30-22 lead.  With less than 2 minutes left, Pomona started marching down the field fighting both the Mustangs and the clock.  But they were getting first down after first down until a turnover sealed their fate.

October 12, 2012: The Pomona Panther quarterback runs the ball later in the 4th quarter against Ralston Valley.

After the turnover, Ralston Valley ran the clock out to win 30-22.  It was an awesome game with just too much going on on the sidelines.

The final picture I will leave you with you will have to click on to view.  After clicking on it, you will want to click on the image again on the next page to get to a larger version.  It is a multi frame image merged together showing the entire Ralston Valley team during the National Anthem.

October 12, 2012: The Ralston Valley Mustangs line up during the Nation Anthem prior to their game against Pomona on Friday night at NAAC

To see more photos from this game, please visit MaxPreps.

 

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