Basalt falls to Fruita in sudden-death OT |

Basalt falls to Fruita in sudden-death OT

Aspen Times photo/Mark FoxBasalt High goal keeper Darbi Scherer kicks the ball back into play after making a save Monday, April 25, 2005 in a match against Fruita on Basalt's home turf.

BASALT – Hollis Howery scored on a quick-hitting counterattack three minutes into the first sudden-death overtime period to lift Fruita Monument over the Basalt High girls soccer team 2-1 Monday afternoon at the BHS field.Fruita, a Class 5A school from the Southwestern League, rallied back from a 1-0 deficit in the first half to remain undefeated on the season at 9-0-2 overall. Basalt dropped to 8-3 overall (the Lady Longhorns still stand at 7-0 in Class 3A Western Slope League play).

It marked Basalt’s first loss since a 3-0 defeat to another nonleague opponent, Denver Christian, on April 9. In between, Basalt cruised past four league foes by a combined score of 28-2.Monday’s match was hotly contested throughout, a back-and-forth affair that placed a premium on defense. Basalt’s sweeper and stopper, seniors Deanna Spracher and Sofie Stenstadvold, respectively, and striker, sophomore Katie Staerkel, never left the field through the 83 or so minutes of action.And it was Staerkel who put Basalt on the scoreboard first with a goal in the 30th minute. Freshman Alia Munger beat a Fruita defender along the left wing, creating time and space to work. She lofted a cross to the top of the goalie box, where junior forward Maddie Hoffman tipped it over toward Staerkel. “Sparkles,” as she’s known, then belted a shot from about 20 yards out, beating diving Fruita goalie Jessica Hunter to the far, left post.

Fruita’s Erin Smith provided the equalizer 16 minutes into the second half. Smith ripped a shot from about the same spot Staerkel had, and Basalt junior goalie Darbi Scherer (who replaced freshman Dayne Toney at the half) got in front of the ball, but it deflected off her and into the goal.After regulation played out in a deadlock, the match went to the first of two five-minute, sudden-death overtime periods. And seconds after Basalt senior Kari Heuer drilled a shot into the hands of goalie Hunter, Hunter boomed a kick in the opposite direction. Howery settled the ball on the roll, beat one last Basalt defender on the run and then tapped a shot past Scherer to the right post for the game-winner.”Basalt surprised my girls,” said Fruita coach Pat Noland. “I think we came in with a superior attitude, even though we knew they were good and we told them they were good. And you’ve got to hand it to Basalt – they’re tough.”

Toney made nine saves in the first half; Scherer made 11 in the second.”I think Fruita let out a big sigh of relief after this one,” said Basalt coach Chris Woods. “But we always want to play tougher teams like these guys, and they’re a good team. And to have it come down like it did – a real quick reversal – well, we’re OK with that.””I thought it was one of the better games we’ve played all year.”

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