Moffat County girls soccer season kicks into gear | CraigDailyPress.com

Moffat County girls soccer season kicks into gear

A rocky first game is a distant memory for the members of the Moffat County High School girls soccer team, now ready to play a lengthy, solid season. Now four games into their year, the Bulldogs are tearing up their new home field and loving it with a 3-1 record to date.

The roster for the team was a little shaky earlier this month, as several members of the Moffat County basketball program were ending that season at the state playoffs, but with all the positions filled, coach Harry Tripp sees things working smoothly.

Everyone on the field knows their roles and remains talkative during games, he said.

"I think we'll just keep getting stronger and stronger," he said.

A few members split their time between soccer and track and field events, but the dual athletes have been able to adjust enough so that one sport doesn't affect the other.

Senior Delaney Baker said achieving a good balance between the two teams is tough, but it's worth it to participate in sports she enjoys so much.

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"It's something you've gotta stay with," she said.

Baker has already achieved two hat tricks this season, both at home, to make her the team's leading scorer. She's also currently the 3A Western Slope League's leader in goals and total points. Moffat County juniors Brittany Swindler and Hannah Walker top the WSL lists in assists and goaltender saves, respectively.

Baker is one of four seniors this year, including Alex Samuelson, Jodi Hough and Chandra Warren. With a junior varsity squad taking the field this season, working with younger girls is a priority, many JV players getting some playing time in the opener against Colorado Rocky Mountain School and the first of two games with Rangely.

"A lot of our girls are new, so we try to help them teach them," Baker said. "They're coming out for the first team, and they're doing really well."

A member of the team since her sophomore year, Hough said the group is starting to build something great, with a sense of camaraderie keeping morale high.

"We all have a good attitude, and we all stick together on things," she said. "A lot of soccer teams have drama, and there's not very much of that here."

The Bulldogs qualified for the postseason in 2013, knocked out in the first round by Manitou Springs. The 7-8 standings last year left them barely out of the mix, but Tripp, coach since 2010, sees a good seed in the playoffs if things stay the way they are.

The dominant Coal Ridge is expected to provide the most resistance among WSL squads, though the Bulldogs have the edge on the 2-2 Titans at the moment.

Additionally, MCHS will have home field advantage against the New Castle group in an April 7 showdown.

After a particularly good game with Basalt, Tripp's confidence in his players is higher than ever.

"If we play like we did today, I think we can take them," he said Thursday afternoon. "We'll take a running to them."

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.

Moffat County High School 2015 girls varsity soccer schedule

Time, Date — Opponent, Home/Away

4 p.m., March 24 — Middle Park, home

Noon, March 28 — Montrose (at Grand Junction), away

4 p.m., April 7 — Coal Ridge, home

4 p.m., April 9 — Basalt, away

11 a.m., April 11 — Grand Junction Central, home

4 p.m., April 14 — Aspen, home

4 p.m., April 17 — Grand Valley, home

11 a.m., April 18 — Vail Mountain, home

4 p.m., April 21 — Vail Christian, away

4 p.m., April 24 — Roaring Fork, home

4 p.m., April 28 — Rifle, away

4 p.m., April 30 — Steamboat Springs, away

— All dates and times are subject to change.

MCHS girls junior varsity soccer schedule

5:30 p.m., March 24 — Middle Park, home

4 p.m., March 26 — Steamboat Springs, home

2 p.m., March 28 — Montrose (at Grand Junction), away

5:30 p.m., April 7 — Coal Ridge, home

5:30 p.m., April 9 — Basalt, away

1 p.m., April 11 — Grand Junction Central, home

5:30 p.m., April 14 — Aspen, home

4 p.m., April 16 — Steamboat Springs, home

6 p.m., April 24 — Roaring Fork, home

5:30 p.m., April 28 — Rifle, away

5:30 p.m., April 30 — Steamboat Springs, away

— All dates and times are subject to change.

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