Summit County Tigers soccer too much for Eagle Valley Devils
GYPSUM — Summit County soccer scored twice during the first 12 minutes and never looked back during a 3-0 victory over Eagle Valley under the lights at John Ramunno Field on Tuesday, Sept. 26.
“The important thing was coming out in the first 15 minutes and establishing the tone of this game,” Tigers coach Tommy Gogolen said. “Our boys did that tonight. That was the difference. We know Eagle Valley can play good soccer. They showed glimpses of it. They’re a good team.”
But two early scores seemed to take the wind out of Eagle Valley’s sails.
Summit’s Farid Infante scored 10 minutes in when Devils goalie Ever Ortiz got caught too far astray from the net. The Tigers Connor Craig got the assist on that tally.
Summit County (4-3 overall and 2-2 in the 4A Western Slope) earned a penalty kick two minutes later. Senior Ryan Snell went to the to lower right corner for a 2-0 lead.
Eagle Valley (3-5, 2-4) struggled to link passes together and, when in Summit’s end, was too vertical in its attack.
“Our team needs to start seeing each other a bit more, focusing on the easy pass rather than the more difficult option,” Devils coach Jere Simms said. “It’s a team first. They have the capability of doing that. We’ve seen that before, so I have full confidence in them. I see this as a hiccup.”
Infante scored the only goal of the second half, lofting the ball over Ortiz during the 67th minute.
Both squads need to make a move to vault themselves into playoff contention. The Devils entered Tuesday night’s contest ranked 52nd in the rating-percentage index, while the Tigers were 53rd. Thirty-two teams make the postseason field.
“We just need to be a little bit smarter,’ Gogolen said. “We’ve given up some dangerous set pieces to our opponents and that’s been the difference. I’m proud of the way we’re playing. The guys are playing good soccer.”
Eagle Valley hits the road for its second matchup of the season against Rifle on Thursday, Sept. 28. Summit County hosts Glenwood Springs on the same day up in Farmer’s Korner at 6 p.m.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, firstname.lastname@example.org and @cfreud.