There's that old saying, "Defense wins championships."
Well, Friday night, it was "Defense wins."
Widefield's football team claimed a 19-9 win over Cheyenne Mountain at CA Foster Stadium, advancing the young Gladiators to 3-0 on the season.
"Defense is our backbone right now," Widefield coach Nic Olney said. "They're playing lights out, and the offense put them in a couple holes with a short field tonight, but they responded very well."
Although the Indians contained Widefield's dual-threat quarterback TJ Davis, the Gladiators defense came up with a pair of all-important takeaways that led the team to victory.
Midway through the second quarter Widefield's Desmond Durand cut in front of a Cheyenne Mountain receiver early, grabbed an interception and ran it 23 yards to the end zone.
The very next Cheyenne Mountain (2-1) drive, Nate Daniel snatched another interception, which led to a 27-yard touchdown pass from Davis to Myreik Goodwin.
Goodwin pulled down an interception of his own in the fourth quarter, putting a halt on Cheyenne Mountain's late-game momentum.
"We had a couple really nice interceptions, a fumble recovery, so it's safe to say our defense set the tone tonight," Olney said.
Cheyenne Mountain coach Jay Saravis said the team learns something from every game - and much like the Indians' Week 1 matchup against Air Academy, Saravis said his team did not quit.
With less than a minute left to play, Cheyenne Mountain forged down to the 22-yard line, but Widefield's defense stepped up again.
John Underwood pulled down back-to-back sacks in the final seconds as the Indians were driving for the end zone.
"We learned today that our guys keep fighting," Saravis said, "but we have a long way to go to be able to play with the big teams like this."
Cheyenne Mountain earned its first touchdown midway through the third quarter thanks to a 12-yard run by Shamauri Rivera.
Davis finished 11 for 22 for 127 yards, while Cheyenne Mountain quarterback Zach Jones was 7 for 16 for 110 yards, and backup Brad Helton was 2 for 12 for 19 yards. Each Cheyenne Mountain quarterback threw two interceptions.