CAÑON CITY - Luke McAllister and Tyler Calhoun, the two quarterbacks to play for Palmer Ridge in Friday’s season-opening blowout of Cañon City, had special nights for different reasons.

McAllister, the starting quarterback tasked with replacing Ty Evans, had his first varsity start. He celebrated with a pair of long touchdown passes to Deuce Roberson II in the Bears’ 48-0 win. The junior’s second touchdown pass was a lofted 38-yard toss that landed softly in Roberson’s outstretched hands as the receiver raced into the end zone on a fourth-down play.

“That safety moved over to the right so I knew automatically (Roberson) was going to have that gap,” McAllister said. “I trusted him, knew where he was going to be, put it on top and delivered it to him.”

The first McAllister-Roberson connection was a shorter pass into the flat that Roberson took around the edge for a 59-yard score.

“I think Luke did a very good job tonight,” Bears coach Tom Pulford said. “I thought he did a good job checking down a couple times and made some big plays.”

After the second connection, Palmer Ridge led 28-0 and Calhoun quickly made it 35-0, jumping a route, intercepting a pass and racing 20 yards for a defensive touchdown.

“He took two outside steps and I knew slant was coming so I was able to jump it,” the senior said.

After Raef Ruel scored his third touchdown, Calhoun capped the scoring seconds before halftime with a short rushing touchdown on an end-around. If the two-touchdown night wasn’t special enough, it came with his dad, Troy, in the stands. Due to Troy’s gig as the head coach at the Air Force Air Force Academy, his opportunities to watch his son play are limited to Falcons bye weeks, such is the case this week, and the occasional home game.

“It was good he got to come out tonight,” Tyler said

“I love when my dad is in the stands, because I look up to him the most. It’s good for me.”

With the game in hand and the clock running for the second half, the versatile Calhoun handled quarterback duties in the second half.

“He’s a wide receiver; he’s a free safety; he’s a backup quarterback; he holds on our kick game; he plays special teams. He’s a little bit of everything. He’s got a very high football IQ,” Pulford said of the coach’s kid.

“Can’t have enough kids like that on the field.”

Both Calhoun and McAllister mentioned that the team's goal for this season nothing short of a third-straight state championship. With a rematch of last year’s Class 3A state title game set for next week at Pueblo East, the Palmer Ridge coach wasn’t too interested in talking end-of-season results.

“Pueblo East is extremely well coached,” Pulford said. “They’re disciplined. They work hard.”

It was a big night for the new quarterback and do-it-all senior, but it was also just the start.

“In the big picture, if the pieces fit together, they fit together, but we know that taking our eye off one play at a time is way we open ourselves to vulnerability,” Pulford said.