Demons give Huskies a battle |

Demons give Huskies a battle

Jeff CaspersenGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Post Independent/Kara K. Pearson

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. Battle Mountain learned firsthand that the late-season version of the Glenwood Springs’ girls soccer team is miles ahead of where the early-season Demons were.But Battle Mountain is still Battle Mountain.The Huskies, who’ve made steamrolling opponents a habit in 2007, diffused upset hopes with timely tallies and trademark physical play en route to a 5-1 win.”I thought it was a pretty good battle,” said Battle Mountain coach David Cope, whose team surrendered just its third goal of the season. “That was a closer game than the score indicated and, I think, indicative of the quality of the league.”Glenwood (8-4-1 overall, 8-3-1 league) kept things close for a half against the Class 4A Western Slope League leaders, who got two goals and two assists from Kelsey Sanders and a goal and two assists from Emily LyBarger.

The speedy Sanders broke a scoreless deadlock 23 minutes in, taking a long forward pass and streaking in up the right side for a breakaway goal. Sanders’ shot sailed high over Glenwood keeper Kelsie Hert’s right shoulder, finding a home in the corner of the net.The Demon defense did all it could to keep Battle Mountain off the board the duration of the half, squeezing the Huskies out of the middle of the field with unrelenting pressure.That didn’t keep Battle Mountain (12-0-1, 11-0-1) from manufacturing offensive opportunities. The Huskies put seven shots on goal in the first half, adding to the mix a number of scoring threats rolling wide or sailing high.A 1-0 intermission deficit didn’t look too bad to Linda Flohr and the Demons.”We knew we could play with these guys,” said Flohr, who had a disappointed team on her hands. “We come out to win every time we step on the field.”The high-powered Huskies, as they typically do, found a way to create separation in the closing half.

Just 12 minutes in, Kelly VanHee somehow battled free of a defender to knock home a short-range goal. Hert, leaning in the wrong direction, had no chance to stop the surprise shot.Glenwood’s upset hopes morphed from slim to worse just five minutes later when Emily LyBarger deflected a Sanders-struck ball into the net for a 3-0 Battle Mountain advantage.With 18:35 to go in the game, freshman forward Kendall Strautman accomplished something few have against the Huskies this season, scoring a goal. The Demon youngster broke free in the right corner and rolled a shot past a committed keeper and into the net.”It felt good to score on them,” Flohr said. “We had our opportunities. I’m proud of these girls. Everybody worked really hard.”Battle Mountain goalkeeper Kori Laundauer was none too happy about allowing a goal.

“Our keeper was devastated,” Cope said. “But I thought she did really well. She came off her line well, handled free kicks like she was supposed to. The goal was just a mix-up.”Sanders added her second goal with 4:48 remaining, driving a mid-range bullet into net from the left corner.Not a bad day for the senior, who felt her team needed a physical battle with the postseason looming.”We need these physical games,” explained, Sanders, the top scorer on a team that’s put up 71 goals in 13 games. “As we enter the playoffs, the competition is greater. (Glenwood) came out strong. They’re a physical team. We expect a battle every time we come here. They’re known for their upsets.”The Huskies weren’t done, adding one last tally when sophomore Kelly Bowles jumped on a loose ball to score a goal in stoppage time.The Demons suffered a blow late in the game when freshman forward Leah Mansfield appeared to re-injure an ankle injured earlier in the season. Flat on her back for a few minutes, Mansfield writhed in pain before being helped off the field, limping badly, with the aid of a trainer.

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