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Dolores Bears end three-year drought with big win

Dolores Bears Quarterback Wyatt Koskie tosses the ball to Dylan Rantz in this file photo.
Dolores football races past Monument Valley for 60-6 win

MONUMENT VALLEY, UTAH – It feels like the start of something good.

After three years without a victory, the Dolores football team got back into the win column in a dominant 60-6 victory over Monument Valley in Utah.

The Bears (1-4) broke up a 24-game losing streak over a three-year span, almost to the day, when Dolores last had a victory on the gridiron – also over Monument Valley – back in 2018.

With improvements over the previous weeks, including three scoring drives in a loss to Norwood, the Bears appeared poised to have a breakout week.

The breakout came, and then some, as Dolores dominated the game on the ground, punishing the Cougars with 429 rushing yards.

Head coach Scott Conklin was pleased with his team’s resilience through the tough weeks against state-ranked Mancos and Dove Creek. The early season tests appeared to have deepened his team’s resolve to put together a four-quarter performance.

The Bears distributed the ball-carrying load, with 11 players sharing the 28 carries for the offense. Six different Bears found the end zone, led by two scores and 124 yards for senior William Taylor. Classmate Wyatt Koskie threw the ball only three times all night, using his legs instead to churn out 83 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Senior Caleb Montoya, junior Dylan Rantz, sophomore Zach Taylor and freshman Tyler Hamm all found pay dirt in the rout.

On the defensive side of the ball, Montoya led a stifling effort, collecting seven tackles to go along with junior Ethan Robson’s six stops. Senior Gabe Allred and sophomore Dylan Koskie added four tackles apiece.

Taylor scored his third touchdown of the evening on an interception return, while Robson and Allred forced fumbles as the Bears dominated the turnover battle.

In a year that has seen Dolores have to make adjustments between 11-man and 8-man football, as they prepare for a wholesale shift to 8-man next fall, the Bears have shown that their group is taking strides towards being a major factor in the Mountain League.

Conklin’s Bears hope that, brimming with confidence, they’ll be able to duplicate their efforts next week when they travel to Elbert Game time is set for Friday, Oct. 8 at 7 p.m.

The Bears will return home on Oct. 15 for a game against Whitehorse, which had been postponed from its original date on Oct. 1. Dolores’ last win on their home field also dates to 2018, when the Bears upended the Raiders.