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March 13, 2013
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Huskies open with win vs. Devils

EDWARDS - Is eight enough?

Dick Van Patten was not around to answer that question, but with Battle Mountain's 15-5 win Tuesday in Edwards, that's eight wins in a row for Huskies boys lacrosse over its Eagle Valley counterparts.

"It was awesome," said Huskies sophomore Tony Clark, who led all scorers with four goals. "We've been looking forward to this. We've had a couple of weeks of practice. We were stoked to get out there and play."

The rivals had a competitive first period with Johnny Bailey breaking the seal for Eagle Valley. The Huskies came back with markers from Clark, Clayton Davis and Mac Kelsall. Bailey to Sam Boyd for Eagle Valley with 1:21 left in the frame closed the Battle Mountain lead to 3-2.

"Our boys came out and scored the first goal," Devils coach Ted Boddy said. "They came out and they said, 'We are going to step up to the plate and out this game on our terms,' and they did. Sitting at 3-2, we were in the game a long time."

However, the Huskies dominated the second, outscoring the Devils, 5-0. Clark got his second, and Davis had his hat trick after two more goals. Those were assisted by Cooper Perkins and Karl Norris.

The pretty passing continued for Battle Mountain as Kelsall scored on a helper from Canon Kirchner and Perkins struck with a feed from Rio Garton.

"I'd say it was a lot of teamwork," Clark said. "The first quarter was a little bit of getting the nerves out. The passing wasn't quite there yet, but we started to gel as a team in the second and kept it going."

As the sun set on Edwards and Eagle Valley, Battle Mountain's Mike Lange was in on the Huskies' next two scores. Lange scored from Perkins with 10:47 left in the third. Lange then helped Clark to his hat-trick goal 90 seconds later. Not to be left out, Perkins had the next two for his trifecta.

Despite the score, Huskies coach Jim Nichols sees good things ahead for Eagle Valley.

"I have to hand it to Eagle," Nichols said. "Their program has come leaps and bounds. They've got two great coaches this year, and it's obvious. I think they're going to have some surprising wins."

New for 2013 is that CHSAA has split the burgeoning sport of lacrosse into two classes. The Cherry Creeks and Chatfields of the state are in 5A, while Battle Mountain, Eagle Valley and 27 other schools make up 4A. The Huskies and Devils are in Mountain Conference with their traditional lacrosse foes.

And while that would seem to make the road to a postseason berth - particularly for the Huskies - a bit easier, some obstacles remain. Steamboat Springs remains the 800-pound gorilla in the conference - the Huskies host the Sailors April 3.

Another important fact for Battle Mountain in the playoff chase is keeping a clean slate in the conference against non-Steamboat opponents. The Huskies lost to Aspen last year, and with Battle Mountain finishing one spot out of the playoffs - 25th out of 24 teams - it's not a leap to say that the defeat against the Skiers was costly.

Battle Mountain is at Chatfield today at 3:30 p.m., while Eagle Valley is at Steamboat Springs on Friday at 5:30 p.m.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or cfreud@vaildaily.com.


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The VailDaily Updated Mar 13, 2013 12:13AM Published Mar 13, 2013 12:11AM Copyright 2013 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.