Moffat County soccer stays boisterous vs. Aspen, Vail Christian
Like a roster full of Bruce Banners, you wouldn’t like the Moffat County High School girls soccer team when they’re angry.
The key, however, is finding the catalyst to get them to hulk out at the right time.
MoCo athletes brought a late burst of energy Tuesday against Vail Christian in a 4-1 loss that was nonetheless the Bulldogs’ best home game so far this season.
The first half came with ups and downs as the Saints wasted precious time netting a pair of goals, yet just before the 20-minute mark, the Dogs’ scoring drought came to a conclusion. Bree Williams broke through the Vail defense and, with a timely pass by Yoselin Cordero-Alcantar, got the first points of the year on home turf.
The score is the first for the team since March 28’s 5-2 road game with Grand Valley.
“I think we just need to be more aggressive,” Williams said.
The Saints got the ball back in the box twice more before halftime, but a switch of sides on the field may have been just what the Dogs needed as their offense took over to keep the ball in Vail territory for the remainder of the game.
A more tenacious attack didn’t come without some war wounds. Jackie Barraza had to be helped off the field when a collision banged up her knee. However, she was only on the bench for about five minutes before getting back in the mix.
Though she spent much of the first half playing conservative D, the second saw her press up much more to join the Bulldog strikers on the approach.
“It can be a tough transition,” Barraza said of her dual duties as a midfielder.
Likewise, goalie Bailey Lawton was enduring physical punishment and still standing by the end of a 17-save game, including a knockdown deflection of a penalty kick by Zoey Barela, who got it past Lawton more than once early in the match.
Though getting a shot on goal set up was easier said than done for the MoCo offense, a more energetic effort on both ends of the field was evidence of improvement in MCHS coach Nathalie Boelen’s eyes.
While the previous weekend had seen Bulldog spirits falter fast in an April 13 home loss to Aspen — ending 10-0 less than three minutes into the second half with the Skiers — Boelen said players were clearly more motivated to fight back this time.
Now the trick is getting a fire built up around her players from the start.
“This second half is exactly what I want to see for the rest of the season,” she said.
MCHS soccer next hosts Roaring Fork at 1 p.m. Saturday.
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