Moffat County soccer roughed up by Roaring Fork, stays stalwart in Pink Game | CraigDailyPress.com

Moffat County soccer roughed up by Roaring Fork, stays stalwart in Pink Game

Despite being outsized in physicality and numbers, Moffat County High School soccer players stood tough in their Tuesday match.

MCHS soccer donned pink socks and other gear as part of its Pink Game for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a match that was a 7-2 defeat to Roaring Fork.

An early score by the Rams didn’t wear down the MoCo confidence too much, but then came another. And another.

Altogether, Roaring Fork’s offense snuck into the goal area four times in the final 15 minutes of the first half to lead 5-0 at halftime.

“After those first 20 minutes, we just fell apart, and they were moving the ball around really good,” Pedro Romero said.

Romero added that Saturday’s away game with Vail Mountain also saw the Bulldogs facing an opponent that had passing on point.

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“They were really moving the ball fluidly around midfield,” he said of the Gore Rangers, who shut out the Dogs 5-0.

Even with a big gap to close, MCHS wasn’t licked altogether, and Vlajko Pavlovic gave the Rams a taste of their own medicine with a rush on goal that resulted in a score off a cross shot about eight minutes into the second half. The Rams responded with another dash to the Bulldog box, with Pavlovic in turn knocking in Moffat’s second goal of the day.

A Roaring Fork boot from just outside the penalty area changed up the dynamic a bit as the Rams adapted to the Bulldog defensive effort right in front of goal.

Coach Nathalie Boelen said her players were at the best right at the beginning and toward the end of the game, with the quick stretch of Roaring Fork goals leaving a lasting impression.

“I think that just gets into their heads, and everything goes south,” she said. “If we hadn’t given up, it wouldn’t have gone to five in the first half. Our defense has to be there, midfield has to be there, everyone.”

She added that the sheer size of some of the Rams was intimidating, with the visiting team ganging up on Moffat players to the extent of eight fouls and a yellow card.

“They had some cornbread-fed boys like I’m used to seeing back in the South,” she said. “They wouldn’t normally be soccer players, they’d be football players.”

Roaring Fork had 32 shots on goal with Bulldog keepers Sabastian Hershiser and Miguel Zaragoza combining for eight saves. With Pavlovic’s two goals, one off an assist by Erik Payan, the Dogs had 15 shots.

The Tuesday win gave the Rams an 11-1-1 record with the best overall tally in the 3A Western Slope League, a 3-2 upset by Basalt their only loss in the conference.

MCHS soccer — 2-11 overall, 1-6 WSL — will host its Senior Night at 4 p.m. Thursday with a rematch against Colorado Rocky Mountain School, followed Friday by a makeup game against Delta to complete the season.