EDWARDS - Talk about busting out.
That's exactly what Vail Christian girls soccer did Friday afternoon at Freedom Park in Edwards. After a tough three-game losing streak to start the season, the Saints turned it all around with a 4-0 3A Slope win over Rangely.
"It felt so nice," senior defender Paris Baker said. "We worked so well together. We're a young team with a lot of freshmen and they gave it their all."
"They have worked so hard," first-year Vail Christian coach Lauren Mutter said. "Even though we lost to Aspen (Wednesday), you could see how they were improving. They did everything we talked about. Eventually, I didn't know what to tell them. I just told them to keep scoring."
That's good coaching, folks.
Gracen McGuckin led the way for the Saints with a hat trick. The senior scored on a a breakaway and a penalty kick in the first half. She completed her trio, thanks to an assist from Rita Sun.
And then Isabella McCormick got in on the act with the assist going to Canyon Baker, Paris' younger sister.
"It's really cool," Paris said. "I'm so proud of her. She's a defender and she was all the way up the field. She did really well."
The Saints (1-3) are a mix of four seniors, McGuckin, Kierra Kalakewich Paris Baker and Mimi Mary and some younger players who don't have much playing experience. But Vail Christian seem to be finding the right blend.
"I think this will build a lot of confidence," Mutter said.
As for the coach, it's her first win on the sideline. Mutter is no stranger to Vail Christian sports. She graduated from the school in 2005, playing volleyball and basketball for the Saints and soccer at the Vail Mountain School. (Vail Christian didn't have a soccer team yet.)
"I've talked about wanting to come back to Vail Christian and coach for a long time," she said. "It's fun for me to be back. I absolutely love it."
The Saints head to Roaring Fork Monday.
Huskies thump Confer
EDWARDS - Message received.
After Battle Mountain boys lacrosse's 12-3 loss to Steamboat Springs Wednesday, Huskies coach Jerry Nichols wanted his charges to take a good, long look in the mirror. The cause of consternation was 10 penalties against the Sailors.
Battle Mountain returned to the field Friday to smack Conifer, 13-4, and took just three whistles in the victory.
"Three penalties is very acceptable," Nichols said. "We were very controlled. We asked them to play our brand of lacrosse, and they did. They hustled for the ground balls, played the body defensively and were solid all-around. Our coaching staff was really pleased."
And with the win, the Huskies upped their record to 7-2, and added another win against a Front Range squad in the quest for a state-playoff berth.
Mike Lange and Tony Clark each had hat tricks. Cooper Perkins and Karl Norris both had a pair of scores. Jesse Greve, Crane McGuckin and Clay Davis also found the net.
Battle Mountain is at Fruita Monument Friday.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or firstname.lastname@example.org.