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Glenwood, Durango square off in season finale

Jeff Caspersen
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Jeff Caspersen Post IndependentGlenwood Springs senior Alejandro Belandria fires a shot toward the net during Saturday's lacrosse game against visiting Durango.
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GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – The boys lacrosse programs at Glenwood Springs and Durango high schools have more in common than the Demon mascot they share.

Each in their fourth season as Colorado High School Activities Association-sanctioned programs, the Demons from both Durango and Glenwood are doing their best to set the foundation for future success.

It’s very much a work in progress on both fronts, but each program is slowly establishing a lacrosse identity.



“Lacrosse, in general, has grown in Durango,” Durango senior Hayden Siekman said. “The attendance at games is high. The youth program is really growing. It’s just coming together, and it’s nice to see that.”

The same goes in Glenwood Springs, where the Demons from down south picked up an 8-4 win over the Demons from the north on a sunny, season-ending Saturday.



“It’s just been about getting the popularity of it up,” Glenwood senior Jake Bair explained. “If you talk to anybody about lacrosse, it’s like, ‘Hey, isn’t that the game where you have sticks and it’s kind of like hockey and kind of like soccer? It’s grown every year. Once people start to know about it, it’s, ‘Hey, this is pretty cool.’ We’ve just been getting more kids in.”

And, as Durango head coach John Robinette can attest, building up the numbers is where the battle begins.

“I feel like we’re making strides, going in the right direction,” the veteran coach said. “We have close to 100 youth players in the club program. Right now, they’re playing in a youth tournament in Grand Junction. We have five youth teams going there.”

Robinette’s varsity squad is certainly making strides. Saturday’s win put the team at 5-4 in its final nine games of 2012.

“We started the season 0-6,” he said. “We brought the team in and told them, ‘Look, we’ve got nine games left in the season and we could have a winning record to end the season.’ I declared it a new season, and we’re 5-4. We finished with a winning record.”

Durango ended its campaign with an overall mark of 5-10. Glenwood wrapped its season at 2-13.

Three goals from Trevor Gabbard, two by Siekman and one apiece by Duncan Whitley, Jared Cook and Paul Bickis helped Durango nail down its fifth win on Saturday. Kyle Truax led the team with two assists.

Glenwood got three goals from Alejandro Belandria and one from Josiah Maner. Bair and Alex Parrish had assists.

The host Demons sent off their handful of seniors with a halftime ceremony, seniors who played a sizable role in increasing lacrosse’s popularity in Glenwood.

“Most of these kids are freshmen,” said Bair, watching the junior varsity squad warm up in the wake of the varsity tilt. “Our JV team my freshman year was the varsity team. … I think these seniors set a pretty good example, kind of like the seniors before us did. I’m looking forward to coming back and seeing how it goes. I feel like, a couple years from now, they’ll be right up there with Battle Mountain and Steamboat and all of them. Just give it time.”

jcaspersen@postindependent.com


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