Vail Mountain School soccer wins league opener in Rifle
RIFLE — Get three points and get out of Dodge.
That was the mission for Vail Mountain School soccer on Thursday, and the Gore Rangers got it done, blanking the Bears, 5-0.
It was not a work of art. On the other hand, to win a league title, one of VMS’ goals, you have to beat the teams you should beat.
Man of the Match, according to Gore Rangers coach Pete Petrovski, was senior Dylan Cunningham. His assist on a second-half goal was all well and good. The coach liked how the senior led.
“His maturity and leadership showed through,” Petrovski said. “He didn’t want us to continue playing the way we were (during then first half). He started winning balls and moving it around. He was helping us ping the ball around. He gave everyone confidence.”
The first half wasn’t bad on the scoreboard — the Gore Rangers led, 3-0 — but, to borrow a page, from Battle Mountain coach David Cope (for whom Petrovski played) as well as the omnipresent Bob Bandoni, it was about quality of play.
Peter Ferraro scored, thanks to Erik Zdechlik, for the first goal. Liam Hurley found the net on a long feed from Dylan Hardenbergh. VMS also capitalized on a set piece — Kevin Garcia to Thomas Singleton.
In the second half, the beneficiary of VMS’ good play was Zdechlik, who had both goals in the final 40 minutes. That was a nice thing for him, given that he has played very well all season on the left side of the field as a distributor.
“He’s a very unselfish player,” Petrovski said. “It was nice for him to get rewarded.”
VMS (6-1 overall and 1-0 in the 3A Slope) returns home on Tuesday for Grand Valley at 4 p.m.
VMS spikers bow to Rangely
EAST VAIL — Rangely defeated Vail Mountain School volleyball in three, 25-18, 25-16, 25-21, on Thursday night in East Vail.
A reminder that the Panthers are a nonconference opponent from the Mesa League side of what used to be the 2A Slope.
VMS (3-4 overall and 2-3 in the Gore League) is at a tournament in Simla today.
Eagle Valley falls to Palisade
GYPSUM — Eagle Valley softball had a tough day on Thursday against Palisade.
The visiting Bulldogs won a suspended game, 14-3, and took the nightcap as well.
More importantly, Eagle Valley (2-8-1) hosts Rifle on Tuesday and has Senior Day on Thursday at the Gypsum Sports Complex against Aspen, both at 4 p.m.