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Late Moffat goal sinks Roaring Fork

John Vandeliner
Craig correspondent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
John Vandelinder Craig Daily Press Roaring Fork's Saulito Vega heads a ball Saturday at Moffat County. The Rams lost the road game, 2-1.
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CRAIG, Colorado ” To Roaring Fork coach John Ackerman, soccer is a game about intensity.

When his team has it, Ackerman believes it can play with anybody.

When they don’t ” well, he doesn’t like to talk about it much.



The Rams lacked the intensity required by their coach in the first half of Saturday’s contest at Moffat County, and when they found it in the second half; it proved to be too late.

“I don’t know if it was the bus ride or not,” Ackerman said. “But we just didn’t come out with the intensity in the first half.”



Roaring Fork scored twice, but fell, 2-1.

Moffat County (2-4 overall, 1-4 in the 4A Western Slope League) took the lead three minutes into the contest on a goal credited to the Bulldogs’ Tracy Mendoza on paper, but to those who were in attendance, what happened on the field was completely different.

Mendoza’s shot ricocheted off a Ram defender, for a Roaring Fork own goal.

Trailing 1-0 at the half, Ackerman tried to light a fire under his team.

“I just told them to keep it on the ground,” he said. “Keep it to the outside. Let’s do more diagonal passes and up the intensity.”

There’s that intensity thing again.

But this time, the Rams (2-2-3 overall, 2-1-3 in the 3A WSL) came out with it.

Wylie Adams scored on a perfect cross by Saulito Vega 12:20 into the second frame, tying the game for the visitors.

“I’m thinking it’s a dangerous game,” Ackerman said. “It’s anybody’s game at that point.”

The teams battled back and forth for the next 20 minutes, each playing a bit more conservatively.

That is, until Mendoza scored ” a real goal this time ” to account for the final margin of victory.

Mendoza executed a perfect header into the back of the net off of a direct kick by Moffat County’s Victor Villa.

“That was a beautiful, basic play,” Ackerman said. “It was awesome to see.”

Despite the loss, Ackerman was happy to have made the trip.

“It was tough to start out with that own-goal,” he said. “But today was a beautiful day to play soccer. It’s really a pleasure to watch these kids play this game and be a part of it.”


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