Preps roundup: Coal Ridge volleyball looks to fight way back into postseason picture
Titans boys soccer awaits Tuesday playoff pairings
After losing the 3A Western Slope League race in a tough, five-set loss to Basalt on April 15, the Coal Ridge High volleyball team finds its playoff fate partly out of its own hands.
For its part, with three matches remaining in the regular season this week, the Titans (7-4 overall, 5-2 league) will likely need to win out, starting against winless Rifle Tuesday night and Aspen (3-7, 3-3) on Thursday. Both are home matches for the Titans.
Beyond that, Coal Ridge will be hoping for the best in the state rankings at the end of the week to make the 24-team regional round.
Currently, the Titans have a No. 26 RPI ranking, based in part on their tough non-league schedule against several top 4A teams, which included wins over Glenwood Springs and Steamboat Springs and losses to Palisade and Montrose.
Another non-league match on the road at 5A Fruita Monument on Saturday could weigh heavily on that final ranking.
“They have a good record (currently 7-3 overall and 4-2 in the combined 4A/5A Southwestern League), so it should help our RPI,” Coal Ridge coach Aimee Gerber said. “We beat them at home last year, so it will definitely be a tough match.”
The 3-2 loss to Basalt (17-24, 25-17, 11-25, 25-23, 21-19) at the “Big House” last Thursday that handed the Longhorns the league championship was tough to take, Gerber said.
“We have had a very tough road schedule lately and the girls are exhausted,” she said of a three-game stretch of road games that included a five-game win over Cedaredge two days before facing Basalt.
“I still think we have a strong chance of making regionals if we can win our games this week,” she said.
In a normal year, losing the league championship wouldn’t be as big a deal, Gerber said. But in this COVID-19-altered spring season for volleyball and a limited post-season field, the Titans’ playoff hopes are less certain.
“Our RPI is going up as other teams above lose matches, and I believe because of our reputation we will get votes in the coaches polls that hopefully will help,” she said. “We will just have to wait and see.”
Tuesday is Senior Night for the Titans, and the Thursday match marks the spring homecoming for Coal Ridge.
In other volleyball action this weekend, it was: Glenwood Springs 3, Battle Mountain 2 (22-25, 25-17, 25-19, 19-25, 15-12); Summit 3, Rifle 1 (16-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-15); Cedaredge 3, Basalt 2 (21-25, 25-14, 26-28, 25-23, 15-8); Basalt 3, Grand Valley 1 (25-10, 22-25, 25-12, 25-16)
Boys soccer: Glenwood Springs 4, Rifle 0
The Glenwood Springs boys soccer team closed out the regular season Saturday with a 4A WSL shutout win over Rifle at home.
Senior Justin Garces scored two of the Demons’ goals and senior Jorge Rosales scored another on senior day at Stubler Memorial Field.
Junior Dylan West scored the other Glenwood goal, as the Demons concluded the season at 6-4 overall and in league play and finished second in the league standings.
State soccer playoff pairings will be announced Tuesday, but Glenwood Springs, at No. 27 in the state RPI power rankings, is not likely to make the 16-team field.
Roaring Fork, which concluded the season with a 3-1 win over Basalt on Saturday, also is out of the 3A postseason mix at 6-3 overall and 4-2 in league behind Coal Ridge, Delta and Vail Mountain.
Goals in the finale for the Rams came from sophomore Emiliana Magana (2) and junior Carlos Perez.
Coal Ridge, as the league champion and the No. 6 power-ranked team going in is likely to earn a top seed in the 16-team 3A playoffs field.
In addition to the big 22-15 Glenwood Springs win over Rifle Friday night, other area teams saw action this weekend.
On the 3A slate Friday, it was Coal Ridge winning on the road at Steamboat Springs, 12-7.
Titans sophomore Brandon Short rushed for one touchdown and finished the night with 107 yards on the ground. Senior quarterback Karsen Dubois connected with senior receiver Danny Salas for the other Titans touchdown.
In Saturday 2A action, it was Estes Park 34-6 over Roaring Fork; and Flatirons Academy 39-7 over Grand Valley.
Senior Reporter/Managing Editor John Stroud can be reached at 970-384-9160 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The 4A state softball playoffs ended for the Rifle Lady Bears Saturday with a pair of shutout losses to Elizabeth 10-0 and Roosevelt 8-0 in the regional round at Johnstown.