After a slow start, VMS blanks Roaring Fork | VailDaily.com

After a slow start, VMS blanks Roaring Fork

EAST VAIL — Apparently, Vail Mountain School soccer's alarm clock went off at about 4:50 p.m., as opposed to 4 p.m. on Tuesday.

And while a rather listless first half wasn't ideal, the Gore Rangers used a strong second half to fly by Roaring Fork, 3-0, on Tuesday afternoon.

"We battled a little bit of complacency after Saturday's game," VMS coach Pete Petrovski said. "We tried to overcome that in training yesterday, and it didn't work. We kind of had an idea it was going to happen."

And after a not-so hot first 40, the Gore Rangers did something about it.

"Coach told us that we weren't stepping to the ball," senior defender Robby Gruber said. "We weren't communicating. We were lethargic. We had a good talk and it got us going."

Eruption

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And off VMS went.

The co-captain led by example with a nice run down the left side. And if it's the left side, it's got to be Eric Zdechlik.

"Coach had wanted us to get shots on goal at halftime because we're really hadn't tested the goalie," Zdechlik said.

He went far side and the Gore Rangers were on the board.

It wasn't long before Peter Ferraro, now sporting ponytails instead of the man bun, scored. Nathan Rouaud chimed in to finish the flurry.

Since no VMS soccer story is complete without both Rouauds, Colin made a nice save, parrying a Roaring Fork shot over the bar to preserve the shutout.

VMS continues to shuffle in back without Bridger Gile (college trip). Gruber and Max Bervy were joined this time around by Max Timm, in place of Michael Resnick (back).

"Max is a really good athlete, and very fast and able to stay with their forwards," Gruber said. "I've been communicating with Max and Bervy and Pablo has been supporting us. It's the second defender supporting us."

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And with the win, VMS (7-1 overall and 3-0 n the Slope) jumped to No. 3 in the rating-percentage index (RPI), while Basalt fell to No. 7 after a 2-1 loss to Delta. Kent Denver remains No. 1, while Jefferson Academy is No. 2. The latter comes to town next week.

But before that, the Gore Rangers have a monstrous game at Coal Ridge on Saturday. VMS and the Titans have developed a fierce rivalry during the last few years, often with supremacy of the 3A Slope on the line.

With the game at Coal Ridge, VMS will be playing on grass and on a narrower pitch.

"It's always something," Petrovski said with a smile. "We're going to give them tomorrow off to heal up. We'll train hard Thursday and Friday and I know we'll be ready for 80 minutes."

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