Saturday’s Vail Valley preps wrap: Lots of lacrosse and Huskies soccer
EAST VAIL — Welcome to Vail Mountain School Lacrosse: The Next Generation.
Yes, the Gore Rangers are the defending Western Conference champions, but a lot of the talent that led them to the title are in college now.
Nonetheless, VMS opened the season with a 9-7 win against Eagle Valley on Saturday, March 17, at venerable Bandoni Alumni Field.
“We’re just teaching the fundamentals, offense, defense,” VMS coach Bobby Ecker said. “It’s been paying off.”
Henry Hancock led the way with hat trick, while Burke Fancher had two goals and three assists. Freshman Becker Dienst ripped the net twice, while Fletcher Holm and Bobby Bolyard also scored for the Gore Rangers (1-0).
Vail Mountain School gets a stiff test on Monday, March 19, when it hosts Battle Mountain, while Eagle Valley heads to Summit County on Tuesday, March 20.
Huskies dust Palmer
Speaking of those Huskies, Battle Mountain broke into the win column on Friday, March 16, with an 11-4 win over Palmer.
Noteworthy is that the Huskies (1-1) have allowed just 12 goals in two games so far this year. Goalie Connor Underwood heads up the defense.
“We knew this would be the strength of our team,” Huskies coach Jerry Nichols said. “To do anything but to capitalize on that would be foolish.”
Battle Mountain lost its opener to Golden in the fourth quarter, so blanking the Terrors, 5-0, during the final 12 minutes on Friday was gratifying and a step in the right direction.
Jeremy Sforzo was en fuego with four goals and four assists, while Tucker Morrow had a hat trick. Mike Barrows got his first varsity start and scored twice. Jackson Kelly and Chis Cappel, as a long-stick middie, scored as well.
Battle Mountain opens league play on Monday, March 19 at VMS. The Huskies are doubtless aware that the Gore Rangers have won the last three meetings between the two schools.
Devils girls lax gets first win
If you have to go all the way down to Telluride, winning makes the trip better.
Eagle Valley girls lacrosse survived the trip and came away with a 17-11 win over the Miners on Saturday, March 17.
Inevitably with the long trip, the Devils started slowly.
“I think we did have problems with a slow start and getting frustrated with our mistakes,” Eagle Valley coach Hannah McKee said. “The girls did a good job of recognizing the issues and stepping up the intensity level. They worked well together to move the ball.”
Hayley Carpenter led the squad with six goals, while Carley Beckum and Araceli Hanson both had hat tricks. Rivenna Olden struck twice and Rachel Devlin, Claire Taagen and Olivia Fedrizzi added to the onslaught.
The Devils (1-1) head to Summit County on Wednesday, March 21, for their league opener.
Huskies soccer loses in OT
OK, Battle Mountain and Eagle Valley soccer can probably agree on something — Glenwood Springs might be the team to beat in the 4A Western Slope.
The Demons beat the Devils, 3-2, in overtime earlier this week and did the same to the Huskies on Saturday, March 17, in Glenwood Springs.
Bailey Murray fed Audrey Teague in the 16th minute for a 1-0 Huskies lead. Glenwood retaliated one minute later for the equalizer. The Huskies fell behind 2-1 to start the second half before Gabby Caballero fed Teague for her second.
Yes, Teague is on a scoring binge and Caballero is impressing as a freshman.
That said, the Huskies (1-2-1 overall and 1-1 in the 4A Slope) have suffered occasional lapses after scoring goals or coming out of halves so far this season.
“We really have to stabilize after scoring, but this was hard-fought battle and I was really pleased that we were able to come back again like we did against Summit (County in a win on Tuesday, March 20). This group has a lot of character and grit.”
The Huskies host Steamboat Springs on Tuesday, March 20.