The Rifle High School football team showed why it was ranked No. 1 in Class 2A on Friday night.
In a matchup with No. 2 Delta, the Bears ran for 338 yards in a 47-29 victory.
The win gives Rifle the early leg up in 2A Western Slope Conference play.
Delta started off strong, driving down the field for a field goal in its opening drive.
That's when the Bears running game took over.
Holden Stutsman scored on a 1-yard dive to give Rifle the lead.
A bad snap through the hands of Panthers quarterback Nolan Bynum on the next drive forced a punt and Levi Warfel scored on a 7-yard run to increase the Bears' advantage.
Another bad snap, this time on a punt, gave Rifle a short field and Warfel scored on a 1-yard run.
Delta resorted to some trickery to score, with wide receiver Nathan Workman throwing a pass on a reverse to Skyler Kraai for a 27-yard score.
Facing a fourth down late in the first half, Warfel took a screen pass 39 yards for a touchdown to give Rifle a 27-9 lead at halftime.
Delta's defense, which had only allowed 14 points heading into Friday's game, kept the Bears from scoring in the third quarter.
Brandon Butler's 1-yard plunge brought the Panthers within 10, 27-17, after a successful two-point conversion.
The teams then traded scores, with a Stutsman 1-yard run followed by Hunter Hughes' 35-yard reception from Bynum.
The Bears' running game then put the game away. Warfel broke off a 57-yard run, which led to Stutsman's third 1-yard TD and Warfel then put the nail in the coffin with a 68-yard scoring scamper.
Hughes capped the scoring with a 47-yard reception.
Warfel finished with 232 yards rushing to go over 1,000 yards on the season and added 60 yards receiving.
Bynum threw for 255 yards, 148 to Hughes and Kraai added 77 yards receiving.
Palisade 45, Steamboat Springs 7: The Bulldogs were up 38-0 after the first quarter and scored again in the second to start the running clock as they opened 3A Western Slope Conference play with a big win.
Palisade High School got big games from the usual suspects, as well as from players who hadn't played much in a 34-32, 16-25, 25-22, 25-9 victory over Battle Mountain.
"When everybody does a little bit, big things get done," said coach Wendy MacAskill.
Emma Walitt, one of the players who hadn't played much this season, collected four kills for the Bulldogs (10-5, 7-1 4A Western Slope Conference).
Kendyl MacAskill led Palisade with 13 kills, three solo blocks and two block assists and four aces. Magdalena Latek had 16 digs and Cadence Neste added 12, Cassie Miller had 15 assists, Caylee Chutka contributed six kills and Elizabeth Hawkins had two solo blocks and two block assists.