Preps roundup: Coal Ridge, Roaring Fork soccer score key league wins as playoffs near; Rifle softball bows out in 4A regionals
A pair of big 3A Western Slope League wins over Basalt and Delta in action this past week has the Coal Ridge High School boys soccer team on the brink of another league title. But the defending state champion Roaring Fork Rams aren’t backing down, after scoring a 3-2 win over Basalt on Tuesday.
After a non-league win over Palisade 6-0 on Oct. 11, Coal Ridge returned to the home field Thursday to score an 8-2 win over the Basalt Longhorns.
Senior Ezra Williams scored four goals and senior Fil Meraz and junior Alexis Serna had two goals each, as Coal Ridge dominated their league foes.
On the road at Delta on Saturday, the Titans scored a 4-0 shutout to improve to 6-0-1 in the 3A league and 11-1-2 overall.
The Titans, now ranked third in the state among 3A teams, close out the season at 4 p.m. Thursday at home against the neighboring Rifle Bears (9-3, 6-2), who are currently in third place in the league.
Rifle this past week scored an 11-1 win over Moffat County on Thursday and won 4-2 at home over Gunnison on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the defending 3A state champion Roaring Fork Rams, now ranked fifth in the state, held onto the second spot in the league with a less-than-pretty but effective comeback win over Basalt at home Tuesday night.
After taking the early lead with a goal from junior Jacob Barlow less than 2 minutes in, the Rams gave up a pair of goals to hand the lead over to the Longhorns. Basalt held the lead until just under 14 minutes to play when the Rams’ 6-foot-2 junior center-back Gabe Salas got his head on a corner kick and directed the ball into the back of the net for the equalizer.
Senior Bryan Rascon knocked home the go-ahead goal, also off of a corner kick, with just over 2 minutes remaining to give the Rams (11-2 overall, 5-1 in the 3A league) a critical win with one game left before the playoffs. Roaring Fork’s only league loss came to Coal Ridge, 3-1, back on Sept. 15.
“We maybe took this team for granted a little bit, but they’re well-coached and have worked really hard to become a better team, and I think that showed,” Roaring Fork head coach Nick Forbes said of the Longhorns.
“We had to up our game, which is hard to do when you’ve started a little flat,” Forbes said. “I’m really proud of the boys for digging in and figuring out how to play a game when everything really wasn’t falling for you.”
Roaring Fork won three straight games last week, 2-1 over 4A Summit, 3-0 over league foe Aspen and 8-1 over 2A Colorado Rocky Mountain School.
Glenwood booters win on senior night
The Glenwood Springs High School boys soccer team scored a 4-1 victory over Palisade in 4A WSL play Tuesday on senior night for the Demons at Stubler Memorial Field. Glenwood got three goals in the first half and matched goals with the Bulldogs in the second. Scoring details were not immediately available.
In other recent soccer action, Glenwood Springs (4-7-3, 4-3-2) also tied 1-1 at Montrose on Oct. 11 and won in double overtime 2-1 at Steamboat Springs on Oct. 13. The Demons close it out on the road at Battle Mountain at 6 p.m. Thursday.
Rifle softball falls in 4A regionals
Playing in the 4A state regional round on Friday, the No. 18 Rifle High School Lady Bears softball team lost 7-2 to No. 15 Pueblo County in the first game, then to No. 31 Falcon 9-5.
Rifle had it tied 4-4 against Falcon when the Bears scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth. A run apiece in the sixth for Falcon and for Rifle in the bottom of the seventh sent it to extra innings.
The Falcons scored four runs in the top of the ninth on four Rifle errors, and the Bears couldn’t answer in the bottom half, handing the win to the lower seed.
Rifle freshman Brynn Axelson was 2-for-5 with one RBI and junior Brooklyn Dennis was 2-for-4, also with a RBI.
Post-season honors went to senior Hailey Worton, who shared the 4A WSL Player-of-the-Year accolades with Anna Baker of Eagle Valley and Mikayla Talbott from Palisade.
First-team selections from the Bears also went to junior Emma Speakman, junior Zoe Hisel and to Axelson. Dennis earned honorable mention.
In the 3A regional division, No. 17 Basalt fell 11-1 to No. 16 Resurrection Christian.
Friday night lights recap
The only home game for Garfield County teams on Friday took Coal Ridge to Grand Valley, where the Cardinals came away 27-14 winners.
Senior Colton Clark rushed for one of the home team’s touchdowns, and junior Braden Allen had a touchdown off of an interception return for the Cardinals.
Grand Valley improved to 4-3 overall and is 2-1 in the 2A League behind undefeated Basalt, 34-20 winners over Moffat County on the road on Friday. The Longhorns are currently ranked fourth in the state among 2A teams.
Also on the road Friday for area teams: 2A Rifle (3-4, 1-2) won big, 43-7 at Aspen; 3A Glenwood Springs (4-3, 1-1) lost 57-14 at Durango, now ranked second in the state among 3A teams; and 1A Roaring Fork (2-5, 1-3) lost 55-20 at seventh-ranked Buena Vista.
Glenwood volleyball notches wins over Basalt, Summit
It was a busy week for high school girls volleyball, as teams enter the final two weeks of the regular season before league titles are determined and regional pairings are announced.
Glenwood Springs notched another two in the win column at home against 4A WSL foe Summit last Wednesday, 3-2 (26-28, 25-14, 25-22, 22-25, 15-12), and on the road Tuesday over 3A Basalt in yet another come-from-behind five-set match, 3-2 (20-25, 24-26, 25-14, 25-19, 15-13)
The Lady Demons improved 13-5 overall and 4-5 in the 4A Western Slope League ahead of a key 4A league match at Palisade, 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
Other recent scores:
Weekend Tournament play
Rifle won 2-1 over Basalt (25-23, 23-25, 15-10)
Rifle won 2-1 over Conifer (25-15, 21-25, 15-4)
Rifle lost 1-2 to Summit (12-25, 25-21, 9-15)
Roaring Fork won 2-1 over Rifle (25-22, 20-25, 15-10)
Roaring Fork won 2-0 over Conifer (25-23, 26-24)
Roaring Fork lost 1-2 to Summit (19-25, 25-22, 16-18)
Roaring Fork won 2-0 over Battle Mountain (25-22, 25-22)
Won 3-1 over Roaring Fork (25-11, 23-25, 25-16, 25-16)
Won 3-0 over Gunnison (25-14, 25-16, 25-17)
Won 3-2 over Vail Mountain (11-25, 22-25, 26-24, 25-21, 15-11)
Lost 1-3 to Aspen (13-25, 25-20, 20-25, 17-25)
Lost 0-3 to Moffat County (20-25, 17-25, 22-25)
Lost 0-3 to University (20-25, 22-25, 21-25)
Lost 0-3 to Montrose (18-25, 21-25, 17-25)
Lost 0-3 to Aspen (20-25, 20-25, 19-25)
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