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Tapia’s 3-run double sparks Rockies over Nats, 9-5

DENVER — Daniel Murphy’s home debut at Coors Field was nearly cut short when he got in the path of a mascot. The Rockies are happy he survived that — and he’s back in the lineup.

Murphy returned after missing 20 games with a fractured left index finger, Raimel Tapia had two doubles and drove in three runs to back a solid outing from German Marquez, and Colorado beat the Washington Nationals 9-5 on Wednesday.

Charlie Blackmon homered and Trevor Story extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a double and a triple. Nolan Arenado had three RBIs, David Dahl had three hits and Wade Davis picked up his third save. The Rockies have won eight of their last 10 and went 5-2 on their homestand.

“What a great homestand,” Murphy said. “These guys played great. I’m just happy to be a part of it at the end.”

Murphy’s two-year, $24 million deal was Colorado’s only significant free-agent signing in the offseason. The former National singled in his first at-bat and then drew a walk after Story tripled and scored on Tapia’s three-run double in Colorado’s four-run third inning.

“Murphy, with a guy on third, less than two outs and he took a walk,” manager Bud Black said. “He could have expanded the zone and tried to selfishly get a ribby but he didn’t. Those are the things that we’re talking about with Murphy that rub off.”

Things got dicey when Murphy came out of the dugout to take the field in the top of the sixth. He stepped into the path of the Coors Field tooth trot race, but disaster was avoided when the oversized tooth veered out of the way.

“He made a really athletic maneuver. Much appreciated,” Murphy said. “He probably could have lambasted me there. I should pay more attention.”

Juan Soto homered for the Nationals, who have yet to win more than two games in a row this season.

Marquez (3-1) pitched in pain in his previous start because of an infected tooth. He had it pulled after the loss to Philadelphia on Friday and settled down midway through the game to battle through seven innings Wednesday.

“He settled down and found the strike zone,” Washington manager Dave Martinez said. “He used his secondary pitches well and got ahead.”

The three runs Marquez allowed came with two outs. Jake Noll’s first major league hit was an RBI double in the second inning, and Soto hit a two-run homer following Victor Robles’ two-out single in the third to make it 3-0.

The Rockies scored the next nine runs off Anibal Sanchez (0-3) and Washington’s bullpen. Blackmon led off the fourth with his third homer to make it 5-3 and Arenado had an RBI single.

Colorado tacked on three more in the eighth against Trevor Rosenthal, whose horrific start to the season continued.

Matt Adams’ two-run single in the ninth was hit third hit of the game.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals: Martinez said INF Anthony Rendon (left elbow contusion) is improving and could return Friday. … RHP Justin Miller (lower back strain) began a rehab assignment Wednesday. Martinez said the club will try to have Miller pitch back-to-back days. … 3B Ryan Zimmerman (heel) was out of the lineup for rest.

Rockies: LHP Kyle Freeland (blister) threw a side session Wednesday. Freeland was placed on the 10-day injured list on Monday. … The Rockies optioned RHP Jeff Hoffman to Triple-A Albuquerque to make room for Murphy on the roster.

ROSENTHAL’S STRUGGLES

Rosenthal allowed run-scoring singles to Arenado and Dahl, and another run scored on a wild pitch, one of three he threw in the eighth. The outing actually lowered his ERA from 40.50 to 36.00.

“We’ve got to get him in the game, we’ve got to see what he can do,” Martinez said. “At this point he just doesn’t look right. We have to figure out what’s going on.”

Rosenthal had not pitched in the majors since 2017 when Washington signed him this offseason. The former All-Star has battled control issues in his seven appearances with the Nationals.

“I’m trying to make a pitch and I’m having bigger misses than I’d like, but the small misses compound,” he said. “I feel really good, really close. I think it’ll happen soon. I just have to keep getting in there.”

UP NEXT

Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer (1-3, 4.45 ERA) opens a three-game home series against San Diego on Friday night.

Rockies: RHP Antonio Senzatela (1-1, 3.55) will open a three-game series at Atlanta on Friday night.

PREP ROUNDUP: Glenwood’s Lisa Kelley wins Eagle Invitational

Competing at the Eagle Valley Devils Invitational Wednesday at Gypsum Creek Golf Course, Glenwood’s Lisa Kelley rolled to an impressive 15-stroke win in the 7-team tournament.

Kelley shot an even round, finishing 15 strokes ahead of Fruita Monument’s Rheanna DeCrow with a round of +15, while Eagle’s Kylee Hughes finished third with a round of +16. Kelley’s 15-stroke win is one of the largest on the Western Slope this season in girls golf.

Outside of Kelley’s great day, Rifle’s Breanna Seay finished fifth with a round of +20, while Glenwood’s Maggie Friemel finished 12th with a round of +29. Rifle’s Caroline Hays finished tied for 21st with Eagle’s Kaitlin Medina with a round of +41, while Glenwood’s Maddie Riley finished 23rd with a round of +42.

Glenwood teammates Emma Price and Katelyn Brennan finished 27th and 28th with rounds of +49 and +52, while Rifle’s Ashley Jewell finished 30th with a round of +61.

In team scores, Fruita Monument shot a +64 to win classic, while Glenwood placed second with a team score of +71. Palisade (+74), Eagle Valley (+81), Vail Mountain (+87), Grand Junction (+96), and Rifle (+122) rounded out the team scores at Gypsum Creek.

BASEBALL

Glenwood Spring 6, Eagle Valley 0

Making the trip to Eagle Valley Wednesday for a 4A Western Slope league battle with the Devils on the diamond, the Glenwood Springs Demons baseball team rolled to a 6-0 win, banging out eight hits as a team.

Against the Devils, Glenwood scored two runs in the third inning and four runs in the fourth inning while shutting out the Devils on the afternoon.

Offensively, senior Dylan Lee led the Demons with two hits, while junior Ashlan Stolley, senior Chano Gonzalez, senior Kai Kanzer, junior Sam Fitzwilliams, senior Liam McMahon, and senior Tyler Dollahan recorded one hit each in the win. Gonzalez and Kanzer recorded one double each, while Dollahan continued to swing a hot bat, homering in the shutout win.

Gonzalez and Dollahan led the Demons with two RBIs each, while Lee and Stolley drove in a run apiece.

On the mound in the league battle, Lee worked five clean innings, allowing just two hits while striking out two and walking one to pick up the win. Sophomore Wheatley Nieslanik worked two clean innings in relief for the save, allowing two hits while walking one and striking out two.

The win improves the Demons to 8-7 (4-1 in 4A WSL) on the season. Glenwood returns to action Friday at Glenwood Springs Middle School in a 4A Western Slope League doubleheader with the Summit Tigers, starting at 3 p.m.

jcarney@postindependent.com

Palisade shuts out Rifle baseball in 4A WSL battle

One day after senior Eddie Medina threw a one-hitter for the Rifle Bears baseball team in a win over Middle Park, the Palisade Bulldogs came into Cooper Field and put the clamps on Rifle’s offense, holding the Bears to just four hits in a 10-0 win Wednesday evening in 4A Western Slope League action.

Scoreless through one inning of play, the Bulldogs busted it open with six runs in the top of the second inning as Brandon Pribble led off with a single before Dylan Allerheiligen reached on an error, putting runners on first and second with no outs. Then, Ryder Mancuso walked to load the bases before Elijah Swank drew a bases-loaded walk to make it 1-0. Nate Bollinger then followed with a two-run double to make it 3-0 Bulldogs, before Jack Mohler picked up an RBI groundout to shortstop to make it 4-0. Cody Bellmire followed with an RBI single to make it 5-0 before Luke Sorensen doubled home a run to cap off the six-run outburst in the second inning.

Rifle tried to rally in the second inning as Levi Warfel reached on a Palisade error and stole second base, but the Bears went down in order after that, sending the Bulldogs back to the plate.

Palisade picked up where it left off in the third inning, plating two more runs to make it 8-0 as Mancuso picked up a two-run single, Bollinger was hit by a pitch, and Swank walked to load the bases. Mohler then doubled home a pair before the Bears got out of it.

In the bottom of the third, junior Derek Wagler doubled with two outs for the Bears before Medina walked to put runners on first and second with two outs, but Palisade retired the next Rifle hitter to keep the Bears scoreless in the league battle.

The two teams remained scoreless in the fourth inning as Rifle got out of a two-on, no-out jam before going down in order in the bottom half of the inning.

Palisade tacked on two more runs in the top of the fifth as Swank singled, Bollinger reached on an error, and Mohler singled to load the bases. Bellmire then drew a bases-loaded walk to make it 9-0 before Sorensen drove in the 10th run on a sacrifice fly to center.

Rifle tried to keep the game going to avoid the mercy rule in the bottom half of the inning as Delaney Phillips and Hayden Wells reached on back-to-back errors, but Phillips was thrown out at third, and Trey Caldwell and Wagler went down on contact, giving the Bulldogs the 10-0 win on the road.

Wagler led the Bears with two hits, while Medina and freshman Gavin Peterson recorded one hit each. Warfel and Peterson stole one base each, while Randy Starks, Charlie Hisel, Dalton Stutsman, and Caidyn Wilcox all picked up appearances on the mound.

Palisade’s Cavan Pawlowski worked five clean innings, striking out six in the win.

The loss drops Rifle to 10-5 (4-3 in 4A WSL) on the season. The Bears travel to Eagle Valley Saturday for a doubleheader with the Devils starting at 11 a.m.

jcarney@postindependent.com

Glenwood girls golf finishes second at RVR

Hosting the Glenwood Springs Girls Golf Championships at River Valley Ranch Monday morning, the Demons’ girls golf team finished second to the Grand Junction Tigers despite tying with identical team scores of 278. The Demons lost to the Tigers on the scorecard tiebreaker.

Individually, Grand Junction’s Brittlynn O’Dell won the tournament, shooting a round of 74, while Rifle’s Masi Smith finished second with a round of 75. Glenwood’s Lisa Kelley placed third with a round of 76 to close out the top 3.

For the Demons, following behind Kelley’s 76 was Maddie Riley with a round of 99, Maggie Friemel with a round of 103, Emma Price with a round of 126, and Katelyn Brennan with a round of 135. Rifle’s Breanna Seay shot a round of 104, while Caroline Hays and Ashley Jewell shot rounds of 111 and 154 to help the Bears finish with a team score of 290.

The Coal Ridge Titans also made the trip to RVR and shot a 338 as a team, as Jaelyn Price led the Titans with a round of 108. Grace Gonzalez shot a 114, while Isabelle Brintnall and Sterling Brintnall shot rounds of 117 and 116, and Kallie Bumgardner shot a round of 119.

Bears, Demons baseball splits in rivalry matchup

When the Rifle Bears and Glenwood Springs Demons baseball teams face off in 4A Western Slope League play, there’s no telling what’s going to happen.

Matching up Saturday at Cooper Field in Rifle for a 4A WSL doubleheader, Rifle took the first game by a 10-3 score, but Glenwood battled back in the second game to take a tight 7-5 decision as the two rivals split the showdown in league play.

In the first game, Glenwood struck first in the top of the first inning, plating two runs as senior Tyler Dollahan drove in senior Chano Gonzalez and senior Dylan Lee on a single after Gonzalez walked with one out and Lee singled. Dollahan was thrown out trying to stretch his single into a double before senior Kai Kanzer then doubled with two outs. Kanzer was picked off at second to end the Glenwood threat in the first inning.

Trailing 2-0, the Bears rallied with a run in the bottom of the first inning as freshman Gavin Peterson led off with a single and scored two batters later on a fielder’s choice by junior Derek Wagler.

The two teams went scoreless in the second, and Rifle then shut down Glenwood in the top of the third inning, setting up a 5-run outburst by the Bears in the bottom of the third to take a 6-2 lead.

Freshman Broc Caldwell led off the bottom of the third with a walk before senior Randy Starks walked with one out after a sacrifice bunt by Peterson. That set up Wagler, who roped a two-run single to make it a 3-2 game in favor of Rifle. Senior Eddie Medina then doubled home Wagler before scoring himself on an error by Glenwood. Senior Wyatt Warfel capped off the inning by scoring on another Glenwood error as Rifle jumped in front early at home.

Glenwood got a run back in the top of the fourth inning as Dollahan doubled with one out and scored on an RBI single by sophomore Zachary Cecil Hoerl to make it a 6-3 game. The Bears answered right back with two runs in the bottom of the fourth as Starks walked and scored on a triple by Wagler. The standout Rifle shortstop then raced home from third on an error by the Glenwood catcher to make it 8-3.

Rifle went on to add two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning as Peterson led off with a walk and scored on a fielder’s choice by Wagler, before Medina reached on a fielder’s choice and stole second and home to cap off the scoring in the 10-3 win.

In the second game, Rifle jumped on Glenwood with three runs in the bottom of the second inning as freshman Charlie Hisel, junior Delaney Phillips -running for senior Wyatt Warfel scored on a single by Peterson, before freshman Hayden Wells – who walked earlier in the inning – stole home for a 3-0 lead.

The Bears added another run in the bottom of the third inning to take a 4-0 lead as Wagler drilled a home run, giving the Bears a sizeable lead.

Glenwood refused to go away though as Glenwood got on the board in the top of the fourth as junior Sam Fitzwilliams singled and scored on an RBI single by sophomore Wheatley Nieslanik to make it a 4-1 game. The Demons then added three runs in the top of the fifth inning to knot the game up at 4-4 as senior Leo Anchondo led off the inning with a walk and scored on a groundout by Gonzalez to make it 4-2. Lee then reached on a Rifle error and scored on an RBI triple by Dollahan before Fitzwilliams doubled home Dollahan to make it a 4-4 game.

Rifle took a 5-4 lead in the bottom of the sixth inning as Medina reached on a Glenwood error and scored on an RBI single by freshman Trey Caldwell.

But the Demons battled back with three runs in the top of the seventh inning to take a 7-5 lead as Lee doubled and scored on a single by Dollahan, who the scored on a fielder’s choice by junior Cole Houston to make it 6-4. A bases-loaded walk by Nieslanik forced in Fitzwilliams – who walked earlier in the inning.

By splitting the doubleheader, Glenwood improves to 7-7 (3-1 in 4A WSL) on the season, while Rifle improves to 9-4 (4-2 in 4A WSL). The Demons travel to Eagle Valley Tuesday, while the Bears host Middle Park and Palisade Tuesday and Wednesday at Cooper Field.

jcarney@postindependent.com

PREP ROUNDUP: Glenwood’s Bryce Risner sets PR in 300m hurdles; Roaring Fork soccer rolls to 9-0 win

There’s a new top seed in the 4A state track and field meet in the 300m hurdles.

Glenwood Springs senior Bryce Risner blazed his way through the competition Saturday at the Dakota Ridge Invitational in Lakewood, winning the event with a personal record of 39.37 seconds, grabbing the top spot in 4A in the event with three weeks left in the regular season. Risner edged out Grand Junction’s Colin Morrison in second with a time of 39.44 seconds, and teammate Wyatt Ewer in third with a time of 40.05 seconds. Risner added a third-place finish in the 110m hurdles with a time of 15.44 seconds.

“Throughout the entire race I could feel competitors behind me, so that really gave me an extra boost,” said Risner after setting the record. “Once I saw my time after crossing the line, I let out a yell because I was so excited and looked at my dad, and he was yelling too. It was an awesome moment.”

Risner has had a goal of being a state track and field champion since he was 9 years old. Now, as he’s winding down his Glenwood career, he’s got a great shot at doing just that in the 300m hurdles.

“When I was 9, I wanted to win a state championship in the high jump,” said Risner. “But that’s changed a bit over the years and now I just want to win a state championship, period. This gives me a good shot at doing just that.”

Risner added that he’ll take the next week off to gear up for the multi-league championship meet at Stocker Stadium the first week of May, which should help him springboard into the state competition May 16-18.

Outside of Risner’s terrific day, the Demons saw senior Sequoia Kellogg win the triple jump, recording a distance of 34-02.75 feet, while teammates Daniela Barajas-Lee and Hadley Yellico finished fourth and fifth in the same event with distances of 32-04.00 and 32-03.00, respectively.

Gavin Harden smashed his previous school record of 9:41.77 in the 3200m run, clocking a time of 9:35.41 to finish in fifth in the event behind Valor Christian’s Cole Sprout, who ran a sub-9 at altitude. Glenwood teammate Henry Barth ran a personal best in the 3200m with a time of 9:45.01 to finish 12th.

Glenwood’s boys 4x400m relay of senior Gavin Olson, Risner, Ewer, and junior Kuba Bartnik placed second in the tough relay with a time of 3:27.33, clinching the top seed in 4A in the relay as well.

Of the 32 athletes that Glenwood Springs veteran head coach Blake Risner took to Lakewood Saturday, a large number of them scored points for the Demons as the Glenwood girls placed eighth with 40 points, while the boys placed seventh with 56.5 points.

For the girls, Sophia Vigil scored a sixth-place finish in the 400m dash, clocking a time of 1:01.47, while Kellogg placed ninth in the 300m hurdles for the Demons with a time of 49.85 seconds.

The girls’ 4x400m relay team of Vigil, Emily Worline, Yellico, and Kellogg placed third in the event with a time of 4:09.42. In the high jump, Kellogg placed ninth after a jump-off, clearing 4-11.00, while Payten Spencer placed fifth in the pole vault, clearing a height of 9-0.00 for the Demons.

For the boys, AJ Adams and Ewer finished third and tied for fifth in the high jump as Adams cleared 6-1.00, while Ewer tied with Rampart High’s Luke Pavlica at 5-11.00. Jacob Wolf turned in a sixth-place finish in the pole vault after clearing a height of 12-04.00, while Ewer placed sixth in the triple jump for the Demons with a distance of 41-11.00.

BASEBALL

Cedaredge 13, Roaring Fork 2

Taking on the visiting Cedaredge Bruins Saturday at Ron Patch Memorial Field in Carbondale, the Roaring Fork Rams baseball team couldn’t overcome a 6-run fourth inning by the Bruins and six team errors in a 13-2 loss in 3A Western Slope League action.

Cedaredge took a 3-0 lead in the top of the third inning before Roaring Fork responded with two runs in the bottom of the frame, thanks to RBI singles from sophomore Graham Pietsch and junior Frankie Harrington that scored seniors Layne Crisp and Dawson Kuhl to make it a one-run game.

The Bruins broke it open in the fourth though, plating four runs thanks to six singles and four walks. The Bruins then added one run in the sixth inning and three in the seventh to cap off the 13-2 win.

The loss drops Roaring Fork to 2-7 (1-2 in 3A WSL) on the season. The Rams host Montezuma-Cortez Tuesday in a doubleheader to kick off the Trent Goscha Tournament at 1 and 3 p.m.

Coal Ridge 8, Aspen 2

Traveling to Aspen Saturday morning for a 3A Western Slope League showdown with the Skiers, the Coal Ridge Titans baseball team jumped out to a 5-0 lead after two innings of play and never looked back in an 8-2 win.

The Titans scored four runs in the first inning and one run in the second inning to take the 5-0 lead before Aspen responded with one run in the fourth inning to make it a 5-1 game.

The Titans then tacked on three runs in the top of the seventh before the Skiers tried to battle back with a run in the bottom of the seventh inning, capping off the scoring in the win for the Titans.

Against Aspen, junior Ryan Kotz threw a gem on the mound, pitching a complete game with 10 strikeouts in league action.

Backing Kotz up offensively, senior Oscar Salazar and sophomore Carson Miller drove in two runs each, while junior Colby Bilson singled twice in the win.

Coal Ridge improves to 5-8 (1-2 in 3A WSL) on the season. The Titans host Grand Valley Tuesday in New Castle in another 3A WSL matchup.

GIRLS SOCCER

Fruita Monument 2, Glenwood Springs 1

Making the trip to Canyon View Park in Grand Junction to take on the 5A Fruita Monument Wildcats Saturday morning, the 4A Glenwood Springs Demons girls soccer team dropped a 2-1 decision in non-league action.

Fruita Monument junior Lila Dere started the scoring for the Wildcats at the 9:48 mark of the first half, firing a shot from 22 yards out that Glenwood sophomore goalkeeper Abby Scruton got a hand on. The shot had enough force though to sneak into the net for an early 1-0 lead.

The Demons battled back quickly as freshman Ella Johnson found the back of the net at the 16:42 mark of the first half, completing a run down the right sideline before firing a shot low inside the far left post, knotting the game at 1-1.

The score remained tied at 1-1 until the 72nd minute as Dere fired a bouncing, spinning shot into the net for the eventual game-winning goal in the non-league matchup with the Demons.

The loss drops Glenwood to 7-4 (6-2 in 4A WSL) on the season. The Demons travel to Rifle Tuesday evening at 6 p.m. for a matchup with the Bears in 4A WSL action.

Roaring Fork 9, Moffat County 0

On the road Saturday morning in Craig for a 3A Western Slope League matchup with the Moffat County Bulldogs, the Roaring Fork Rams rolled to a 9-0 win.

Individual stats were not available at the time of press.

Roaring Fork (6-4, 3-1 in 3A WSL) travels to Basalt Wednesday for a rivalry matchup with the Longhorns.

jcarney@postindependent.com

Titans break three school records at Coal Ridge Invitational

The Coal Ridge Titans boys and girls track and field teams might not have finished where they wanted to in the team standings Friday at the 26-team, 790-athlete Coal Ridge Invitational, but the Titans did tie or set three new school records, while also seeing small improvements across the board.

Coal Ridge’s girls placed fourth out of 21 teams with 54.50 points, finishing behind Moffat County (98.50 points), Palisade (74.50 points), and Rifle (67.50 points) in the top three. The Titan boys placed seventh with 43 points, as Palisade won with 92 points, and Rifle placed second with 78 points.

The Roaring Fork girls placed 17th with 10 points.

Head coach Ben Kirk said the team standings were a bit of a shock, but overall he was pleased with his teams and the community as a whole in one of the biggest regular season invitationals on the Western Slope this spring.

“The boys and girls kind of showed our youth today; I think they were a little awestruck with how big the meet was,” said Kirk after the long day in New Castle. “Ours is one of the biggest meets of the year. We had a few kids that did really well, and a few kids that didn’t perform as well as we hoped. Still working on a lot of things as a team like who to put where and in what event, but we’re still pleased with performances today.

“We had lots of little things that didn’t translate into big points, but they were great improvements for us and great to see,” added Kirk. “There were just a lot of little hidden gems. The more I reflect on it, I think we had a really good day. We’re kind of shocked where we were team wise, but I think that says a lot about the talent that was here today; there’s a ton of great competition that came today.

Kirk added that he was simply super happy overall with the meet and the community support, as a number of volunteers helped pull off the nearly 800-athlete invitational without a hitch.

Freshman Peyton Garrison and sophomore Phoebe Young, two standout female athletes at Coal Ridge High School, set or tied school records at the meet, as Young cleared 10 feet, three inches in the pole vault to win the event, while Garrison clocked a 12.80-second 100m dash to tie the school record before then clocking a 25.89 in the 200m dash, finishing second in that event.

The freshman has had a remarkable season jumping from middle school competition last season to varsity competition this season. That jump has been a hard one, said Garrison, but one that’s challenged her and pushed her to reach the heights she has this season.

“I’m a little bit surprised with my performance this season; this is a lot harder competition than what I faced in middle school,” said Garrison after tying the school record in the 100m. “But this experience will go a long way for me. I was pretty surprised to see my time after the 100, but I’m really happy with it, but I want to get faster.”

With Young, the sophomore has continued to set a new school record in the pole vault in nearly every meet this season. Last year, as a freshman Young broke the then-school record of 9’2” before then setting it at 9’3” late in the year. This year, she cleared 10’2” at the Eagle Invitational two weeks ago before clearing 10’3” today at her home meet.

“I missed our home meet last year, so I was pretty excited to compete in it this year,” said Young. “To be able to break the record here at home is awesome.”

The sophomore cleared 10’3” on a new pole that she just started working with this week. Young added that she was pretty nervous to use the new pole in the actual competition, but once she cleared the height she was elated and looks forward to using the new pole the rest of the year.

Aside from the school records on the day for Coal Ridge, the Titans’ girls 4x200m relay team of Mary Bolitho, Ari Cornejo, Maya Mercado, and Natalie Smyte stepped up in a big way for the team. Down three of its top runners for the event, the Titans plugged in some younger runners and saw the relay team nab a second-place finish, clocking a time of 1:52.06 to score some key points for the Titans.

“[It was] great to see those girls step up, take the big-girl relay and get some points,” said Kirk.

In the girls high jump, Coal Ridge saw three jumpers clear 4 feet, nine inches, but it was Marin Simons that finished in the top three for the Titans, winning a jump-off at 4-09.50 to score key points for the Titans.

Sophomore Taylor Wiescamp claimed fourth in the shot put for the Titans with a throw of 34-10.00, closing out the day in strong fashion for the Titan girls.

For the Titan boys, sophomore Moises Contreras was the first one to score points on the day as he placed fourth in the 400m with a time of 53.53 seconds. Hayden Reeder placed sixth in the 300m hurdles for the Titans with a personal record of 44.80 seconds.

Coal Ridge’s boys 4x800m relay had a strong day as Jack Price, Jordan Grant, Stephen Jones, and Gustavo Archila crossed the line in third place with a time of 8:51.60, shattering the group’s personal record of 9:07.01. Grant then grabbed third in the triple jump for the Titans with a mark of 38-08.50, while Damien Spell finished fifth in the shot put with a throw of 41-07.00, closing out the day in style for the Titans.

RIFLE AND ROARING FORK

Outside of Coal Ridge at its home invitational, the Rifle Bears boys and girls and Roaring Fork’s boys and girls had strong individual days.

Rifle junior Delaney Phillips placed third overall in the 200m behind Coal Ridge’s Garrison with a time of 26.63. Sophomore Karisa Coombs followed up with a second-place finish in the 3200m run for the Bears, clocking a time of 13:16.46.

In relays, the Rifle girls really cleaned up as the team of Halie Holmes, Hope Kehr, Maddy Valencia, and Phillips placed second in the 4x100m with a time of 52.18 seconds, while the Rifle relay team of Valencia, Jamie Caron, Ashley Manera, and Phillips placed fourth in the 4x400m with a time of 4:20.50. In the 4x800m, Rifle’s girls relay team of Coombs, Caron, Mackenzie Elizardo and Manera placed third with a time of 10:58.09.

The pole vault saw three Rifle girls finish in the top five as Manera finished second behind Coal Ridge’s Young with a height of 9-03.00, while Emilee Demann and Amanda Green finished fourth and fifth with heights of 9-03.00 and 7-03.00. Valencia then closed out the day for the Rifle girls with a third-place finish in the triple jump with a distance of 32-06.50.

For the Rifle boys, things started fast as Dalton Pruett won the 200m for the Bears with a time of 23.18 seconds. Then, teammate Bryce Schanche won the 400m for the Bears with a time of 52.50 seconds, and Jonathan Hernandez placed third in the 1600m for the Bears with a time of 4:59.61.

In relays, Rifle’s 4x100m team of Embrey Marantino, Schanche, Pruett, and Tanner Vines placed second in the event with a time of 44.84 seconds, before the same relay team then won the 4x200m with a time of 1:33.82. Rifle’s 4x800m relay team of Max Rensberry, Jace Coller, Nicholas Heil, and Hernandez placed second in the event with a time of 8:51.55.

Closing out the day for the Bears, Tanner Cotner placed second in the triple jump and fourth in the long jump with distances of 39-05.00 and 19-03.50, respectively.

For Roaring Fork, Lily Nieslanik placed third in the triple jump for the Rams with a distance of 15-10.25.

jcarney@postindependent.com

Glenwood soccer rolls to 6-1 win over Eagle Valley

Displaying some impressive ball skills and tenacious physicality, the Glenwood Springs Demons girls soccer team rolled to an important 6-1 win Thursday night at Stubler Memorial Field over the visiting Eagle Valley Devils in 4A Western Slope League action.

In years past, the Demons and Devils were good for a tightly contested match with goals being hard to come by for both teams.

Not this year.

The Demons showcased a high level of skill on the ball that head coach Joe Calabrese had only seen in small glimpses in years past. That skill helped the Demons rack up chance after chance against the Devils in the league battle, leading to the 6-1 win, marking the 15th straight win at home for the Demons, dating back to April 13, 2017.

“It’s our home, and we feel really confident here,” said Celia Scruton, Glenwood’s junior defender. “We’re in front of our home fans and on our field where we practice. We have advantage with our throw-ins and we just feel so much more confident at home. We have pride here, and it’s important for us to win here.”

Glenwood jumped on Eagle Valley quickly as freshman Ella Johnson scored the game’s first two goals in the opening five minutes, giving the fans in attendance a sign of things to come on the night.

“It was incredible for us as coaches to see that [early start],” said Calabrese. “We’ve been working on more of the mental side of things, so for them to build off of what happened Wednesday and come out the way they did today and sustain that for the majority of the game was fantastic. I couldn’t be happier with that.”

Johnson opened the scoring at the 3:02 mark, thanks to a throw-in along the left sideline by senior defender Ashley Weir. Johnson settled the throw-in and one-touched it to senior forward Levyn Thomas, who worked the give-and-go with Johnson, leaving the freshman wing streaking down the left sideline in on goal. Johnson fired a low, line-drive shot inside the left post for the 1-0 lead.

Nearly a minute later, Johnson made it 2-0 thanks to a throw-in from the right sideline by sophomore Reese Goluba. The throw-in found Johnson in the middle of the attacking box, where the freshman tapped home a rolling shot to the far left post for the 2-0 lead that took the wind out of the Devils’ sails early. Glenwood’s fast start wasn’t by accident either, as the experienced Demons weren’t overly happy with their performance Wednesday night at home against Palisade. That frustration coming out of a 3-0 win over Palisade led to the intensity level for the Demons being high at kickoff and led to a focused, balanced attack all game long.

“Everyone seemed to struggle mentally last night,” said Thomas. “So tonight as a team, we made a pact to have a more positive attitude and bring each other up. That really correlated to each player working really hard and focusing tonight. We ended up having good passes to feet and good touches; our simple, fundamental skills were good today, and that showed.”

“I thought we were much better tonight, honestly,” said Scruton. “Our energy was up, and players were talking to each other. We made it a goal to work on our energy, intensity, and communication tonight, and I feel like we were successful in doing that.”

Up 2-0, things really opened up for the Demons as Glenwood controlled possession throughout the game. Sophomore Tatum Lily had two great looks on goal via headers off of great throw-ins by Goluba, and junior Summer McSwain fired a shot off the crossbar midway through the first half off of a corner kick by Johnson.

Despite struggling to finish chances early and truly put the Devils away, Glenwood didn’t panic. That confidence paid off at the 26:42 mark as Thomas made it 3-0 for the Demons off of an assist from Lily.

Lily worked down the right wing and slipped around an Eagle defender along the back line to the right of the goal before firing a low cross through traffic to the left boot of Thomas. The senior teed up a shot that grazed off of the inside of the left post and into the goal for a 3-0 lead.

Eagle responded quickly, though, as junior Adie Schumacher took advantage of a Glenwood turnover deep in their own end and slipped a shot past diving Glenwood sophomore goalkeeper Abby Scruton to make it 3-1 with 10:14 left in the first half.

Glenwood atoned for the mistake late in the first half as freshman Sydney Reinhold, making her varsity debut for the Demons, received a cross into the box after a long run down the right sideline by senior Sierra McKinney and fired a shot inside the left post to make it 4-1. Reinhold’s goal came on her first varsity touch and was really set up by McKinney’s quick counter from defense to offense after a failed corner kick by the Devils.

“That’s the level of play that we want here,” said Calabrese. “When the younger girls come in and want to be part of the varsity program — this program — it takes a lot of work. That transition to be able to make an impact that young is an incredible thing to do. Our program is fostering those opportunities for girls like Sydney or Ella to come in and make the impact that they’re making.”

Holding a 4-1 lead coming out of the half, Glenwood continued to string together scoring chances, but Eagle senior goalkeeper Zoe Booth made a number of early saves in the first half on Goluba and Lily that kept the Devils close.

The Demons broke through in the second half as Johnson found Goluba in the box off of a corner kick for a header just underneath the crossbar at the 19:18 mark of the first half for a 5-1 lead.

Reinhold then put the finishing touches on the 6-1 win, sliding into the box to redirect a terrific cross from Thomas into the net for the 6-1 win.

“Their defense seemed to be pretty spread out,” said Thomas. “Our attacking forwards stayed out wide and dragged defenders outside, and that created a pretty big gap in the middle that were able to find that gap, play the ball through and get some crosses off and get chances on goal.”

With the win, Glenwood improves to 7-3 (6-2 in 4A WSL) on the season.

The Demons travel to Fruita Monument Saturday for a non-league battle with the 5A Wildcats at 11 a.m.

“We have to stay confident and believe in ourselves,” said Scruton. “We know we’re a good team and can play at that level, but we have to play how we play. We have to play Glenwood soccer because when we do, it’s really good.”

jcarney@postindependent.com

PREP ROUNDUP: Roaring Fork baseball tops Moffat County, 8-7; Coal Ridge baseball falls to Meeker, 8-6

Making the trip to Craig Thursday afternoon for a 3A Western Slope League tilt with the Moffat County Bulldogs, the Roaring Fork Rams baseball team picked up a close 8-7 win despite leaving 17 runners on base.

The Rams were just one hit away in nearly every inning from breaking the game open, according to head coach Marty Madsen.

Against the Bulldogs, junior Eli Nickamin recorded an RBI single, while senior Layne Crisp doubled and scored a run on a balk, and senior Dawson Kuhl, singled, doubled and drove in a run in the win.

Senior Kevlin Requeno singled twice and walked twice, while junior Kyle Baird singled twice, walked twice and drove in a run. Sophomore Graham Pietsch singled twice and drove in a run,.

The win sees Roaring Fork improve to 3-6 (2-1 in 3A WSL) on the season. The Rams host Cedaredge Saturday at Ron Patch Memorial Field at 11 a.m.

BASEBALL

Meeker 8, Coal Ridge 6

Hosting the Meeker Cowboys Thursday in New Castle in a non-league match-up, the Coal Ridge Titans baseball team dropped a tough 8-6 decision.

The Titans started strong but came up short in the end despite a strong pitching performance by junior Lane Stecklein. The junior worked five innings, striking out seven Cowboy hitters in the loss.

Offensively, senior Oscar Salazar led the Titans with two RBIs on the afternoon, while sophomore Colton Westphal walked twice for the Titans in the loss.

With the loss, Coal Ridge falls to 4-8 (0-2 in 3A WSL) on the season. The Titans travel to Aspen Saturday for a league match-up with the Skiers at 11 a.m.

Demons win 3-0 over Bulldogs in 4A WSL tilt

Another home game, another win at Stubler Memorial Field for the Glenwood Springs Demons girls soccer team. That makes it 14 straight wins at home dating back to April 13, 2017.

Against the Bulldogs, the Demons struck early, scoring just under 14 minutes into the 4A Western Slope League battle.

Off of a corner kick by junior Summer McSwain, senior Sarah Helm headed the ball into the air to senior Sierra McKinney, who redirected the ball into the net for the game’s opening score.

A little under four minutes later, the Demons made it 2-0 as sophomore Tatum Lilly found Helm on the run on the far right. Helm worked to the outside corner of the goal and unleashed a screamer of a shot inside the far post for the second goal of the game. Helm them capped off the 3-0 win with a tremendous strike on a free kick at the 23:11 mark of the first half. Helm set up just outside of the attacking box and fired a strike under the crossbar in the upper left corner of the net for the final goal of the game.

The win sees Glenwood improve to 7-3 (6-2 in 4A WSL) on the season. The Demons return to action Thursday night at home against the visiting Eagle Valley Devils at 6 p.m.

GIRLS TENNIS

Aspen 6, Glenwood Springs 1

Hosting the Aspen Skiers Wednesday afternoon at the Glenwood Springs Recreation Center’s tennis courts, the Glenwood Springs Demons girls tennis team dropped a 6-1 decision.

Against the Skiers, No. 1 singles player Rosalie Potvin dropped a 0-6, 1-6 decision to Aspen’s Mary Williams, while No. 2 singles Eliana Suarez dropped her match to Aspen’s Mary Hopkinson 1-6, 1-6.

Freshman Kenzie Winder, the No. 3 singles player for the Demons, dropped her match by scores of 4-6, 4-6.

The Demons’ No. 1 doubles team of Emma Helm and Chance Balis picked up the lone win for the Demons on the day as the pair defeated Aspen’s Bliss Pekkala and Mary Tarver Reid 6-4, 4-6 (10-2).

Glenwood returns to action Saturday, April 20 at Canyon View Park in Grand Junction, starting at 9 a.m.

jcarney@postindependent.com