Fit to be tied |

Fit to be tied

Nate PetersonAspen CorrespondentGlenwood Springs, Colorado CO

ASPEN, Colorado With each blast on goal Thursday afternoon, Basalt forward Craig Riggins figured it was only a matter of time before he and his Longhorns teammates would pull away from rival Roaring Fork.With each save, Rams goalie Anthony Flores and the rest of his teammates started to believe that a win was surely theirs.In the end, both players had it all wrong. The clock had the last word when, after two 40-minute halves and two five-minute periods of extra time, the match ended in a 1-all draw.Afterward, Flores and Riggins had decidedly different opinions of what had just taken place. In the case of a tie between nearby rivals, nothing less could be expected.Were pleased with a tie, but we should have won, Flores said. Thats how the game goes.We just needed one more, said Riggins, who scored Basalts lone goal to knot the score 23 minutes into the second half. You figured one of them had to go in.At least more than one of the 24 shots Basalt poured on goal. The Longhorns dominated possession for nearly all 80 minutes of regulation while teeing off on Flores, but grew increasingly frustrated as missed scoring chances piled up.The Rams, in contrast, continued to gain confidence as the game remained close. Especially after going up, 1-0, from a Basalt own goal in the 24th minute. The score came on a rare first-half run into Basalts half when the Rams J.R. Ackerman lofted a ball that Longhorns sophomore keeper Scott Riggins misjudged in the air and knocked into his own net.I whiffed on it, really, Ackerman said. It wasnt a very good shot. The wind just picked it up and he tipped it into the back of the net.Frustrated by the sequence of events, Basalt began to press for the equalizer, which, in turn, led to more missed scoring chances. Shots sailed wide, high or zipped right into the hands of Flores. In the 58th minute, the futility reached comedic levels when Basalt had three point-blank shots on Flores right in the box, but all three were deflected before a Rams defender cleared the ball. The Longhorns, for their part, werent amused.A little more than four minutes later, Riggins tied the game when he tapped in a well-timed cross from Austin Johnson, but Basalt only continued to press with time slipping away.I think we have a real patient defense, Rams coach John Ackerman said. Weve been talking about the midfield coming back and supporting the defense and the kids did a good job of that today.The tie was Basalts second in as many games and Roaring Forks third this season.After a scoreless draw against Vail Mountain School on Saturday, Basalt coach John McDermott figured his team was due to break out offensively.Considering how the defending 3A Western Slope champions controlled the tempo both Saturday and Thursday, McDermott was not discouraged.We just have to keep digging, he said. Were there, were that close. We just totally dominated the midfield and their defense in both games. We just need to learn how to finish.In the first extra period, Basalts scoring woes continued. Senior Marshall Cleveland had an uncontested run on Flores, but pushed a shot well over the crossbar. Scott Riggins atoned for his own goal when, following a blast from the Rams Christian Campos, he snatched what would have been a sure goal out of the air.Campos had another shot in the second overtime, and Craig Riggins had a nice chance in the Roaring Fork box, but Flores broke up the play with a slide tackle and the game ended less than a minute later.Basalt now 0-2-2 on the season will look to get its first win when it hosts rival Aspen on Tuesday. Roaring Fork (1-1-3) next plays Coal Ridge on Sept. 18.

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