Vail Valley preps wrap for Staurday
VAIL – Last season, Lewis-Palmer goalie Brent Schwarz carried his team to a state title. Saturday night at Dobson, his Rangers teammates paid him back.
Lewis-Palmer’s Andrew Clark scored with 5:29 left in the third period, helping lift the Rangers to a 4-3 win over Battle Mountain, and, in the process, saving Schwarz from a night he’d probably rather forget.
The Huskies managed to tie the game at two with 13:24 left in regulation on one of the more bizarre goals in recent memory at Dobson. Battle Mountain’s Rudi Baldwin appeared to be trying to dump the puck into the Rangers’ zone before a line change.
The puck seemed to be trickling harmlessly right at Schwarz, one of the best goalies in the state, and somehow went right through his five-hole. (As a side note, one could hear every coach who has ever stood behind a bench from the Mite to NHL level bellow, “When in doubt, put it on net.”)
“I don’t think it was one of his stronger games. Obviously that one goal was a fluke,” Lewis-Palmer coach Steve Fillo said. “But he didn’t look too strong on some other things.”
But like a championship-caliber team should – the Rangers are most people’s pick to repeat – they picked up their teammate who was having a bad night.
“Obviously for any goalie, that would be disappointing,” Clark said. “To be able to score like that and bring him back is a great feeling.”
Ironically, Clark probably wouldn’t have been in that situation had not Lewis-Palmer’s Zach Rosenboro gotten the gate earlier in the game with a checking-from-behind penalty in the first period. That forced Fillo to reshuffle his rotation with Clark getting the promotion to the Rangers’ top line.
Battle Mountain’s Jack Sunderland gave the Huskies a 1-0 lead when Dawson Quint picked up an ill-advised clear from Schwarz. Sunderland roofed the pass, and the Huskies smelled an upset.
The Rangers started tilting the ice in the second period and got the equalizer from Jordy Fleming. One minute later, Lewis-Palmer capitalized on a slow line change from the Huskies and had a 2-1 advantage, courtesy of Justin Brame.
After Baldwin’s memorable goal, Young gave the Rangers the lead for good. Huskies coach Gary Defina pulled his goalie, Jason LaPrade, with 45 seconds left, but the Rangers scored an empty-netter. Sunderland added one late for the Huskies.
“We’ve got the talent,” said Defina, whose team fell to 1-5. “We’ve shown against a lot of good teams that we can play in spurts. We just haven’t pulled it together for a full 51 minutes.”
Defina added that his team has head a heavy load of games in the early part of the schedule – six in the first 11 days of the season – and that with some time to work over the holiday break that results will improve.
The Huskies are at Standley Lake Thursday before the break.
In the meantime, Lewis-Palmer has a busy week ahead, at Pueblo County Tuesday, followed by Ralston Valley in state-title rematch Thursday, and its league opener against Coronado on Friday.
“Expectations are high,” Fillo said. “We weren’t the best team in the state last year, but we won the state championship. My goaltender stole the state championship for us. We were a junior-laiden team. I have 11 seniors now. So the whole nucleus returned. I told the guys, ‘Last year, we were David. Now we’re Goliath.'”
Devils fall at Glenwood tourney
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – There really has to be a statute of limitations on the Flohr family at Glenwood Springs, right?
Kevin Flohr, the latest of that family to torment the Western Slope, dropped 28 points on Eagle Valley as the Devils lost to Glenwood, 74-47.
Flohr, who had four of Glenwood’s nine 3-pointers, seemed to be in midseason form.
“He had a great game, but pretty much every time he missed a shot, we weren’t getting to the rebound,” Devils coach Brent McConaghey said.
Rebounding was a problem for the devils, as were missed layups. On the positive side of the ledger, the Devils did a much better job on turnovers. Tim Wells had 10 points, while Jesse Gish finished with nine for Eagle Valley.
The Devils boys (3-3) started the day with a tight 48-38 loss to Faith Christian.
On the girls’ side, unfortunately, Kenzie Kuhn is going anywhere for Glenwood either. She had 18 points as the Demons topped the Devils, 63-26. Faith Christian also got the best of the Devils, 73-42.
Kayla Gagnon led the Devils with 10 points against the Eagles, while Bri Roth had the same number against the Demons.
“It definitely shows we’ve got work to do,” Eagle Valley coach Sam Bartlett said. “But Glenwood is looking like the top team in the conference this year. We just have to get after it in practice.”
Both Eagle Valley teams are at Coal Ridge Tuesday.
Huskies lose to Clear Creek
IDAHO SPRINGS – A season-high 20 points from Cody Hervert wasn’t enough to keep Battle Mountain boys basketball from suffering a 47-41 defeat Saturday at Clear Creek.
That performance did help the senior get named to this weekend’s all-tournament team. Irving Ruacho chipped in eight points, while Joe LyBarger had seven.
“We learned that we need to execute our motion offense,” Huskies coach Tom Padilla said. “We just weren’t setting screens. We’ve got only on returning varsity starter (Hervert), and the kids are learning to make the jump from junior varsity to varsity.”
The Huskies (4-2) are at Basalt on Thursday.
Saints’ streak ends
EDWARDS – Vail Christian girls basketball saw its three-game winning streak come to an abrupt end with a 72-47 loss Saturday at home to Hayden.
The Saints will try to get back on track Thursday when both the girls’ and boys’ teams host North Park at 4 and 5:30 p.m.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or email@example.com.
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