Prep notebook: Battle Mountain girls soccer season ends with 5-2 loss to Grand Junction Central |

Prep notebook: Battle Mountain girls soccer season ends with 5-2 loss to Grand Junction Central

Bryant scores five goals for No. 15 Warriors in 4A state tournament first-round victory

The Battle Mountain girls soccer seniors pose for a photo on senior night earlier this month. The Huskies season came to a close with a 5-2 loss to Grand Junction Central on Wednesday in the first round of the 4A state tournament.
Rex Keep/Courtesy photo

The No. 18-seeded Battle Mountain girls soccer team saw its season come to a close on Wednesday, falling to No. 15 Grand Junction Central 5-2 in the first round of the 4A state soccer tournament. The Huskies ended their 2023 campaign with a 9-5-2 overall record and finished second in the 4A Western Slope with a 6-2-2 league mark. 

“One objective of any season is to qualify for the postseason; we were proud to have taken part and proud of our effort,” head coach Dave Cope stated. “Once a team is in the playoffs you hope, as a staff, that when the end comes, you are either standing on the top step or that you have been eliminated by a better team or a great player and that you have gone down performing well.” 

On Wednesday, the unstoppable force was a great player, and her name was Liana Bryant. The Mississippi State-signee scored five goals — the first time a Cope-led squad has ever allowed such an individual scoring spree. After a 0-0 opening half, Bryant had two quick breakaway goals in succession at the 48th and 49th minutes, respectively.

Isabella Borg got Battle Mountain on the board 10 minutes later from inside the box, but Bryant had a quick response in the 59th minute to put the Warriors up 3-1. The Huskies demonstrated their trademark resilience, and with just under 20 minutes remaining, got a top-of-the-box score from Cassie Ledezma.

Cassie Ledezma, shown playing in a game earlier this season against Evergreen, scored a second-half goal in the 60th minute to make it 3-2 in Wednesday’s first-round game against Grand Junction Central. Ultimately, the Huskies fell to the Warriors 5-2.
Rex Keep/Courtesy photo

“Our play was great last night,” Cope commented. “We dominated large portions of the match, had some good chances to score at 0-0 through the first 50 minutes of the game and we scored two great goals.”

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The Huskies couldn’t tie things up, however, and Bryant iced the round-one win with a pair of goals in the 70th and 77th minutes, her 33rd and 34th on the season.

“Crazy game! Great for the neutral spectator,” Cope stated. “It was a great season and I am proud to have coached these seniors.” 

Baseball notes: Eagle Valley comes up short against Glenwood Springs

This much is sure: when Eagle Valley baseball plays Glenwood Springs, it’s going to be close. After opening the season with a loss to the Demons way back on March 10, the Devils took care of their I-70 rivals with an 11-8 revenge win on April 5. On Wednesday, the Demons used a four-run third inning to pull away victoriously in the rubber match by a score of 6-5.

The Devils, who got out to a 3-0 lead after two innings, were led at the plate by Elias Pena and P.J. Lombardo. Pena went 2-for-4 with an RBI and Lombardo was 1-for-4 and had two RBIs. Pena also struck out five and allowed one run in just over two innings of work on the mound.

The Devils tied the game at 5-5 going into the bottom of the seventh, but Glenwood Springs pinch-runner Leo Meraz stole second and third base and then scored the game-winning run on a one-out passed ball.

Eagle Valley (8-9 overall, 4-4 league) hosts league-leading Palisade (15-6 overall, 10-0 league) for a doubleheader on Friday starting at 2 p.m.

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