No orange: But VMS home for the playoffs
3A state soccer playoffs
VMS (5) vs. Vanguard Charter (29), 1 p.m.
Roosevelt (30) at Roaring Fork (3), 2:30 p.m.
Coal Ridge (9) vs. Sterling (24) at Manual H.S., 1 p.m.
Aspen (16) vs. The Pinnacle (17) at Kent Denver, 3:30 p.m.
Basalt (31) at Frontier Academy (2), 1 p.m.
Note: VMS has to charge admission for Friday’s game because of CHSAA rules.
EAST VAIL — Vail Mountain School soccer will take the field on Friday for a first-round state playoff game against Vanguard Charter and will not be wearing orange.
Since the last time VMS soccer hosted a playoff game — boys or girls — CHSAA has instituted a new rule — the home team wears white.
That’s really enough for a former coach of the school for whom the Gore Rangers’ pitch is named to say, “Dios mio.”
That’s the bad news.
VMS has to wear white because it drew the No. 5 seed in the 3A state bracket. The Gore Rangers play Vanguard at 1 p.m., followed by Jefferson Academy and Telluride at 3 p.m. on Friday with the winners playing at 2 p.m. on Saturday. All the action is at the exalted grounds of Bandoni Alumni Field.
“Our guys were planning on playing a playoff game,” VMS coach Pete Petrovski said. “Obviously, we were surprised to be hosting. Our first goal was to make the postseason. Nothing surprises this team. They know how hard it is. We even have the juniors leading, knowing that teams are going to go harder this time of year.”
Respect for Slope
The 3A Slope surprisingly got a lot of love from the seeding committee. Roaring Fork is No. 3 and also home. Coal Ridge got No. 9, nearly a seed for hosting. Aspen (No. 16) and Basalt (no. 31) also got at-large berths.
Other names of note include Denver Christian (No. 4), Colorado Academy (No. 6) and Alexander Dawson (No. 20). VMS tied Denver Christian and had wins over the latter two during the regular season.
“It’s nice to see the rest of the state recognize the teams that went out and scheduled hard teams,” Petrovski said. “Playing in our league, we know how many good teams we have in this league.”
The Gore Rangers got back to work on Tuesday after a mini-break athletically. The coaching staff gave the team Friday and Monday off, so the gents had four days to heal up and rest.
VMS knows very little about Vanguard, out of Region 1 in Colorado Springs. The Coursers (10-4) finished fourth in their league. They went 0-4 against teams in the tournament — Salida (No. 10), Colorado Springs Christian (No. 18), Manitou Springs (No. 26) and Fountain Valley (No. 27).
As for the orange
Despite CHSAA’s mandate on home uniforms, Friday is officially Orange Day at VMS. Fans should feel welcome to break out the orange. Members of the team were wearing their orange jerseys in school on Tuesday.
And VMS could still wear orange. If the bracket breaks to form, the Gore Rangers would be at Denver Christian Friday after next.
“We have to keep going until we’re the lower seed,” Petrovski said. “If you want to wear orange, we’ve got to advance. It’s a great motivational tool.”
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.