Saturday’s soccer wrap: Down goes Evergreen
EVERGREEN — And no shootout was required this time.
Of course, there are no shootouts during the regular season, but anytime Huskies soccer goes to that tiny pitch on the west edge of Denver, Nov. 1, 2012 comes to mind.
Battle Mountain won 2-1 via penalty kicks and goalie Christian Espinoza’s ability to stop them during the 2012 state quarters. On Saturday, the Huskies got big goaltending again, this time from Jack Skidmore, and a timely goal from Creek Kamby for 1-0 win.
“The only teams who have made the (state) quarterfinals three years in a row are Evergreen, Broomfield, Cheyenne Mountain and us,” Huskies coach David Cope said. “We see (Evergreen) as one of the best teams in the state. To play away from home, down a man and get a result is tremendous.”
There was also that down-a-man thing. David Ortiz got a red card with 10 minutes to go, so the Huskies were in deep water. Skidmore made three mind-blowing saves as Evergreen pushed up for the equalizer.
And on the one he missed, Logan Ruark was there to clear it off the line.
“Heroic,” Cope said. “Logan never gave up on the play. He kept running behind Jack, and he made a clearance off the right line.”
One of the Huskies’ goals coming into this showdown was to win the first 20 minutes of the game, something they have struggled with during their last three games. The slow start was brought into plain relief in a 2-1 loss to The Classical Academy last week in Edwards.
Against Evergreen, the Huskies got out of the blocks and settled in well, defending and possessing and not falling behind. Midway through the first half, Andrew Herrera made an overlapping run and got the ball to Kamby.
The big guy got the ball with his back to the net, turned and fired to the bottom left of the Evergreen net for the only goal of the game.
The Huskies (4-2) are allowed to celebrate this for a little while, but have to get back to work for a huge week. Battle Mountain is at Summit County on Tuesday, then hosts Steamboat Springs on Thursday, followed by a Friday game at Palisade.
Devils draw at Delta
Eagle Valley soccer made a point on Saturday.
Showing a lot of character after a tough loss to Battle Mountain on Thursday, the Devils hit the road on Saturday at Delta earned a 1-1 draw.
Nikolaus Opel scored for the Devils and Delta got a legitimate penalty kick for its scoring.
“I was concerned about the morale of the team,” Devils coach Bratzo Horruitiner said. “They were so invested in Battle Mountain and tired as well. It’s a tough field with high grass, and they played hard.”
The point could be precious for Eagle Valley (2-1-1 in the 4A Slope and 3-3-1 overall). The Devils get Delta back at Hot Stuff on the final day of the season, Oct. 16. In the meantime, Eagle Valley has next week off to rest and practice before heading to Steamboat Springs on Sept. 23.
VMS downs Dawson
Hey, big news. Vail Mountain School’s Clay Kirwood scored a goal.
And Kirwood’s goal stood up in a big 1-0 nonconference win for the Gore Rangers at Alexander Dawson on Saturday.
After a first half full of chances, Eric Zdechlik made a run along the left side and found Kirwood at the top of the box. Kirwood made a cut there and fired it left side for the only tally of the game.
And while that goal was obviously necessary, the real story of the game was the defense led by goalie John Linn. Tommy Miller at sweeper, J.P. Emblad at stopper, Kade Manula on the right and Nick Whiteford on the left were rock solid.
“We also used a lot of our bench,” VMS coach Pete Petrovski said. “We’ve got some guys with the bug, so we had to shuffle guys in an out. Everyone who came into the game did a really good job.”
VMS (2-1-1) has a big week ahead. The Gore Rangers at Roaring Fork for a nonconference tilt, and then open 3A Slope play with Rifle on Thursday and CRMS on Saturday. The two league games are at majestic Bandoni Alumni Field.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.