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Rivals run past Red Devils in State C 6-Man playoffs


November 1, 2018

For the Noxon Red Devils, the payoff was making the playoffs for the second straight time; the rest was just ice cream and gravy.

Proving that ice cream and gray don’t really go that great together in spite of the fact that they are both tasty treats when consumed individually, the Red Devils lost their State C 6-Man playoff game 51-14 to Geraldine-Highwood in Highwood Saturday.

Noxon coach Bart Haflich harbored no bitterness towards Geraldine-Highwood afterwards.

“Geraldine-Highwood is a really good football team,” he said. “They played well and we didn’t. But it takes nothing away from our guys, we knew going in that it would be a tough test playing the No. 1 team on the road as a No. 4, and it turned out that way.”

The Rivals, in the final season of the co-operative compact between Highwood and Geraldine, roared out to a 30-0 lead by the end of the first quarter and led 39-6 at halftime.

The VanVleet brothers, Cade and Edison, ended up scoring Noxon’s two touchdowns in the game, with Cade crossing the goal line on a one-yard run in the second quarter, and Edison inventing a run of 42 yards for the Devils’ final score of the season in the fourth.

One of the top players in the Montana 6-Man ranks this season, Levi Brubaker booted the two-point conversion following Edison’s touchdown.

The Rivals were mostly successful in shutting down Brubaker, Noxon’s other most potent offensive weapon. “Levi popped off a few big runs but we couldn’t finish the drives,” Haflich said. “You have to credit their line play for that, they were pretty tough up front.”

For Geraldine-Highwood, Brady Duvall threw two touchdown passes to Isaiah Maxwell and another to Maverick McKinlay, and JR Spencer, Liam Laws and Ryan Seaman added rushing TDs. The Rivals also scored on a safety during the game.

Haflich saw the silver lining from the Red Devils’ latest playoff appearance.

“We had a great season, with a couple of very tough games early on that largely determined our fate,” he said and then referenced his most valuable seniors. “And we are really going to miss Levi and Edison next year, it will be really tough to replace their leadership and skills.”


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