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3 state high school football championships to be determined Saturday

DENVER -- Three state high school football championships will be determined Saturday -- and a familiar school is not among the six teams that will be playing.

For the first time since 2008, Valor Christian High School of Highlands Ranch will not be playing in a state championship game. The seven-time state champion was upset in the 5A quarterfinals two weeks ago by Grandview of Aurora.

Instead. Pomona High School of Arvada will be playing in its third consecutive 5A championship game at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

The fourth-seeded Panthers (11-2) lost to Valor Christian each of the past two seasons in the final, 30-14 in 2016 and 29-26. Pomona is seeking its first championship since winning 4A in 1988.

They will play second-seeded and unbeaten Eaglecrest of Centennial. The Raptors (13-0) are in their first final since winning the 5A title in 1993.

Eaglecrest, which is 25-1 the past two seasons, is coming off a thrilling 32-31 double-overtime win over Columbine in the semifinals.

It will be a battle between Pomona's offense, which averages 44.6 points a game, and Eaglecrest's defense, which is allowing only 12 points a game.

The 5A game will be preceded by the 4A final between top-seeded Pine Creek (12-1) of Colorado Springs and sixth-seeded Pueblo South (12-1) at 11 a.m.

Pine Creek will be playing at Sports Authority Field at Mile High for the fourth time in five years. It won championships in 2013, 2014 and 2016. It's the first title-game appearance for Pueblo South.

Tickets for admission to both games cost $15 and can be purchased at the stadium. Parking is free.

The 3A championship game will also be played Saturday between second-seeded Palmer Ridge (13-0) and fifth-seeded Erie (11-2). The game will be at 1 p.m. at the Air Force Academy.

Tickets can be purchased online or at the stadium.

All three games will be streamed live on the NFHS Network.