Some teams to watch as the stretch drive begins | VailDaily.com

Some teams to watch as the stretch drive begins

First off, your sports editor is fine.

He did not hurl himself upon the flaming dumpster that was the San Francisco Giants' bullpen earlier this week. We like to call this emotional development. That and the fact that he has lots of clothing to indicate that the Giants have won three World Series in 2010, 2012 and 2014. He will gladly live in the past as long as the Nationals beat the Dodgers today in Game 5 of the NL Division Series.

But this brings us to a point about high school sports. Sometimes, you've got the makings of a special season. The ingredients come together — like actually remembering to have a bullpen. (Stop it, Freud.)

OK, really, we're back. I think we meant to type fifth runner, offensive line, center back or libero there.

So to some teams to watch.

VMS soccer

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As long as we stop running into goalie Colin Rouaud in key situations, I think we're good here. (Really, guys, leave Colin alone. He's a nice guy.) Given that Coal Ridge beat Basalt, the Titans are likely going to win the 3A Slope.

As they say in the "Airplane" movies, that's not important right now. As of the last check, and the standings change hourly, our Gore Rangers are No. 3 in the rating-percentage index, aka RPI. That's exactly you want to be.

Do not take the Colorado Rocky Mountain School lightly, and then get after Delta and Jefferson Academy. As a motivational technique, how'd that game go last year against J.A.?

Good, you're ready now.

Win your games and get geared up for orange. In addition to our new Colin Rouaud Rule, finish, boys. That was the takeaway from Coal Ridge. Bury a team when you get the chance.

Huskies soccer

Yes, you're probably getting jobbed by RPI at No. 13. You can't control it. What you can control is winning your final two games and the 4A Slope. Everyone wants sweatshirts, right?

Perhaps I (and coach David Cope) are more burdened by history than the current team, but a road game at Glenwood Springs is a trap game. (Cue Admiral Ackbar.) It's a narrow pitch. It has some grass, not much. Find a way and then get ready for Steamboat Springs.

This is a well-balanced team with goaltending, defense, ability to possess and multiple scorers, particularly with Creek Kamby rampaging recently. You can go places and likely will the way RPI is going. Tell CHSAA what it can do with its RPI.

The 2012 team was ranked No. 6, by the way. That was kind of wrong, too.

And congrats to Luke Wilson. Imagine that — a player named Wilson coming forward to score a goal. Never seen that before.

Along those lines, I will be wearing my Gonzaga shirt on Sunday, Wilson clan. And, yes, #ponyup!

Devils volleyball

Beat Palisade. This is what we call the eye test. I know a good team when I see it. The signs include multiple offensive threats, offensive threats who can play other parts of the game, the ability to cover the floor like crazy and a setter who's an offensive threat as well.

That's 4-for-4.

The RPI is treating the Devils well — No. 6 at last sighting. Keep it rolling, ladies.

Devils football

OK, Uncle Chris was right on this. That nonconference schedule was brutal, and you're fine. At 2-4, the Devils are 24th in the RPI because the team's opponents' winning percentage sits at .634, which included the Summit County game.

People talk a lot about which teams I "like" better than others. (Example: Giants good; Dodgers bad.) When it comes to Slope football, I really do not like Palisade. It's time to knock off the bully of the block.

Cross-country

Team-wise, look out. Here come the Battle Mountain girls. With the full complement of Hardings (Naomi and Lizzie), this could be a scary bunch. The boys ain't bad either. (Kidding, fellas.) It should be interesting to see how regional lineups shake out after today's meet at Rifle.

See you at the games.

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