Youth will be served for Demons this fall | PostIndependent.com

Youth will be served for Demons this fall

Forward Miguel Peralta drives the ball toward the Eagle Valley goal on Thursday night at GSHS.
Colleen O’Neil / Post Independent |

No other school in the valley was hit as hard by graduation as the Glenwood Springs Demons in volleyball, as the Demons saw an astounding seven seniors move on from the program, leaving just four experienced varsity players returning for the 2016 season under first-year head coach Dennis Sunderland, who takes over for Sara Ryan this fall.

Last year’s seniors Kenzi Johnson, Chally Korn, Megan Uren, Blake Fergen, Megan Mazzatta and Mariah Hagen leave a big hole for a Glenwood program looked to bounce back from an 8-15 season in 2015, so standout junior Tye Wedhorn will have to take on a bigger role this season at the net as the middle hitter for the Demons under Sunderland.

Along with Wedhorn, juniors Dani DeCrow, Kassidi Johnson and Saylor Warren all return to the court this fall.

With the loss of as much talent as the Demons saw due to graduation, Glenwood will face an uphill climb on the court in 2016, but under the direction of Sunderland the Demons could will their way to success in the league and grab a spot in the playoffs.

“They’ve been in the gym and working hard,” Sunderland said. “I’m expecting them to grow a lot and learn a lot this season. They’ve already shown me they have the capacity to learn and the desire to work hard, so I’m expecting them to do some good things this year and pick things up quickly with the new system we’re going to be running. I have a lot of kids that have quite a bit of volleyball experience and quite a few players that are good athletes and can play all over the court.”

The Demons will open the season, Tuesday, August 30 at Grand Junction.

Volleyball:

Head Coach: Dennis Sunderland, first year

Last season: 8-15, 3-11 4A Western Slope League

Key Returners: Tye Wedhorn, Jr., MH; Kassidi Johnson, Jr., S; Saylor Warren, Jr., OH/MH; Mary Fuller, So.; MH

In almost identical fashion to the girls volleyball team, the Glenwood boys soccer team also saw seven seniors depart the program due to graduation, led by All-Conference players Will Osier and Cameron Horning, along with solid senior defenders Mason Yellico, Camilo Landa and goalkeeper Ryan Nott.

Due to the loss of experience, the Demons have a tough battle in front of them heading into the 2016 season, but fortunately for the Demons under head coach Wayne Smith, six seniors and four junior with experience at the varsity level return.

Headlining the returning experience for Glenwood are senior midfielder’s Miguel Peralta and Alex Trejo, who scored a combined seven goals in 2015. Joining Peralta and Trejo is junior forward Axel Garces, who finished tied for second on the team in 2015 with six goals.

“Those are some of our key players this year,” Glenwood head coach Wayne Smith said. “Miguel [who goes by Papas], is a significant player for us this year. He’s a talented player who’s going to have a great senior year for us. Alex is a team leader and a captain this fall who is going to anchor our back line, while Axel is a really talented guy that we can use anywhere and play to his strengths.”

A jump in production will be expected from the trio this fall as the Demons look to make a trip to the playoffs after coming up just short last fall.

“We always want to improve,” Smith added. “Last year was the best season record we’ve had in eight years, but we play in a tough conference. We’d like to be a title contender this year, and that’s our expectation. If we are, we’ll advance to the state playoffs. That’s a realistic expectation for us.”

Boys Soccer:

Head Coach: Wayne Smith, third season

Last season: 9-6, 7-5 4A Western Slope League

Key Returners: Miguel Peralta, Sr., MF; Alex Trejo, Sr., D; Axel Garces, Jr., MF