Carlson nets goals, weekly honors
Cassie Carlson watched from the sideline last Tuesday as the Glenwood Springs Demons lost their second league game of the season, and, in doing so, lost control of second place in the Class 4A Western Slope League girls soccer standings.
Injury or not, don’t expect to see Carlson on the sidelines again this spring.
“I couldn’t stand watching it,” the Glenwood midfielder said. “It’s my senior year and I want to take full advantage of it. I didn’t want to be on the sidelines.”
Carlson was expected to be out until the season finale against Steamboat Springs on Saturday due to an injury to her big toe on her right foot. Instead, she came back with a vengeance just two days after the Rifle game.
The Demons played four games in five days in a beefy section of the schedule. Carlson tallied four goals and three assists as Glenwood rattled off four straight wins.
Her performance earned the senior this week’s McDonald’s Glenwood Springs High School Athlete of the Week honors.
“Our team just fell together,” Carlson said. “Everything started to click. We started to spread the field and we showed our physical play.”
And anyone who has seen Carlson on the soccer field or basketball court knows the senior is generally in the midst of physical play. Her competitive zeal doesn’t allow her to play any other style than rough and tumble.
She plays physical – “We’re not girls, we’re competitors,” she says – but certainly not dirty.
In the basketball season, Carlson she earned the WSL Sportsmanship Award voted on by league officials.
“I figured (the officials) saw me push the other players down, but I always helped them back up,” joked Carlson.
Carlson, who plans to attend Colorado State University next year, has just one regular-season game remaining in her high school career, coming up Saturday against league-leading Steamboat Springs.
And it’s in the front of her mind that each game is now one of the last chances for the seniors to achieve high school athletic glory.
“It’s really weird realizing that we can’t come back and get it next season,” she said. “I’m realizing this is our last opportunity to make a difference and go out with a bang.”
The shots may not come off her right foot with the bang they did earlier in the season before her injury, but she says getting used to using her left foot more. And she proved in the last four games that she has plenty of scoring power, even with that big toe slowing her down.
Or maybe the injury is helping.
“My dad says since my toe is hurt my shot doesn’t go over (the net) anymore.”
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Area prep basketball teams begin their 2019-20 campaigns with tournament action both home and away this weekend.