ANCHORAGE -- The Juneau-Douglas High School football team's long Saturday became an eternity after Bartlett administered a 41-12 whipping of the Crimson Bears at the Anchorage Football Stadium.
Southeast weather turned Juneau's trek north into a replay of "Trains, Planes and Automobiles." A direct flight turned into a tour of panhandle towns, including some landing adventures in Yakutat. The Crimson Bears pulled into AFS at the scheduled kickoff time of 3 p.m., and the game started 45 minutes later.
Saturday dawned at 4:45 a.m. for the 26 Juneau players who came north, according to coach Reilly Richey. If their heads weren't spinning from their travel ordeal, the were agog after the Golden Bears blitzed them for three first-quarter interceptions and touchdowns.
"I'm thrilled by the performance tonight. It seems like we're peaking at the right time, especially with a tough game at Chugiak next week," Bartlett coach John Jessen said. "It seems like we play highly motivated teams every week, and with this game Chugiak has new life."
The Golden Bears improve to 5-2, 3-2 in the Cook Inlet Football Conference while Juneau drops to 3-3, 2-3.
Bartlett opened the game with a scoring drive that took 2 minutes, 38 seconds, highlighted by a Rickey Rollins 58-yard run and ending with Rollins getting in from two yards out. Juneau's first three possessions netted 35 yards before they ended with interceptions by Bartlett's Brandon Moore, Zack Bowman and Jesse Spillman.
The Golden Bears found the end zone following the last two picks. Jermaine Montgomery blew through the Juneau line for 22 yards to make it 14-0 with 4:24 left in the period, and quarterback Marcus Watts connected with Charles Worland for a 44-yard strike less than three minutes later.
With the ball back and down 21-0, Juneau shook off the cobwebs and pout together its best drive of the day. Nearly eight minutes later, quarterback Brett Fairchild's 20-yard pass glanced off Jacob Dutton's fingertips in the end zone on fourth down. Montgomery scored late in the second quarter, leaving Bartlett up 27-0 at the half.
The Golden Bears owned the line of scrimmage in the first 24 minutes, collecting 207 yards on 24 carries. Tyler Blewett accounted for 77 yards in the half and finished with 128 of his team's eventual 220 rushing yards.
"The line would give me a big hole at first and after that they couldn't bring me down with arm tackling," Blewett said. "Rollins was getting big holes too. Everyone was running great."
Blewett's touchdown made it 34-0 less than four minutes into the third quarter. But with Juneau at its own 48-yard line with a first-and-10, Bartlett's Zac Roundtree delivered a wicked sack of Fairchild, who fumbled into Tui Alailefaleula's hands. The defensive end rumbled 45 yards for the home team's final touchdown.
Given Juneau's upset win over Service the previous week and Bartlett's precarious playoff chances, Blewett said the team was tense.
"We've got a lot of pressure for this game. A lot of people were nervous because we've got a lot of young people on this team," Blewett said. "A big game like this for a young team was tough but we played real well."
His coach agreed.
"Our platooning helps that. They're good runners and the line did a good job today," Jessen said.
"We've had pressure the last few weeks. When we were 1-2 we had pressure," Jessen said. "It's thrilling for us to put together a game like this.
"The score doesn't indicate what could have happened. We were gracious with the running game, we played all our guys and we could have won by a lot more, I think."
GOLDEN BEARS 41,
CRIMSON BEARS 12
JUNEAU-DOUGLAS 0 0 0 12 -- 12
BARTLETT 21 6 14 0 -- 41
Bartlett -- Rollins 2 run (Rollins kick), 9:22.
Bartlett -- Montgomery 22 run (Rollins kick), 4:24.
Bartlett -- Worland 43 pass from Watts (Rollins kick), 2:08.
Bartlett -- Montgomery 10 run (kick failed), 0:50
Bartlett -- Blewett 1 run (Rollins kick), 3:56.
Bartlett -- T. Alailefaleuea 45 fumble recovery (Rollins kick), 1:22.
Juneau-Douglas -- Miller 7 pass from Bre. Fairchild (pass failed), 1:22.
Juneau-Douglas -- Dutton 19 pass from Bre. Fairchild (run failed), 0:56.
First Downs 9 13
Rushes-yards 29-82 40-220
Passing yards 131 79
Return yards 122 3
Passes 8-17-3 3-8-0
Punts 3-270 4-31.5
Fumbles-lost 1-1 0-0
Penalties-yards 6-29 9-100
RUSHING -- Juneau-Douglas: Cameron 11-38, Drennan 4-18, Bre. Fairchild 8-14, Connally 2-7, Tupou 3-5. Bartlett: Blewett 17-128, Rollins 7-63, Montgomery 5-35, Burgos 3-2, Beuchler 1-1, Munoz 1-1, Watts 1-(-3), Gionson 5-(-7).
PASSING -- Juneau-Douglas: Bre. Fairchild 8-17-3 -- 131. Bartlett: Watts 3-8-0 -- 79.
RECEIVING -- Juneau-Douglas: Connally 3-51, Dutton 4-49, Rose 2-24, Miller 1-7. Bartlett: Worland 1-44, Montgomery 1-22, Rollins 1-13.