Colbert’s Prep Playbook: Basalt soccer makes playoffs, will play Aurora West
The Basalt High School boys soccer team is going dancing. They had been right on the line most of the season, but when CHSAA announced the Class 3A state playoff bracket Monday, it was good news for the Longhorns.
Basalt will be the No. 29 seed in the 32-team bracket, where it will face No. 4 seed Aurora West College Prep Academy in the first round Friday. The first-round games had originally been scheduled for Thursday, but forecasted snow across the state this week forced a one-day postponement.
Basalt is 7-6-1 overall this season, having gone 3-3 in Western Slope League play to finish fourth. The Longhorns have been competitive in nearly every game this fall, having won five of their past seven contests. Those two losses both came by a single goal to league champion Roaring Fork and WSL runner-up Delta.
Aurora West is 14-1 overall, the lone loss coming in the season opener to Regis Groff, the No. 18 seed in Class 4A.
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Roaring Fork, a state semifinalist in 2018, is the No. 5 seed in 3A this season and will play No. 28 Peak to Peak in the first round. The Rams and Longhorns could potentially meet in the quarterfinals. Delta earned the No. 6 seed, while Vail Mountain is No. 18 and Coal Ridge is No. 30.
Salida is the top overall seed in 3A, followed by No. 2 Kent Denver and No. 3 Atlas Prep. Kent Denver won the 2018 state championship, beating Liberty Common in the final.
Basalt was the No. 26 seed in 2018, losing to No. 7 Faith Christian in the first round, 2-0.
Aspen did not make this year’s state tournament, finishing the season 2-13 overall. AHS lost 4-0 at Fruita Monument on Saturday in its regular-season finale. The Skiers last missed the postseason in 2017. Aspen lost to Kent Denver in the first round in 2018.
PROVE IT TIME FOR FOOTBALL
This is the last week of the regular season for Aspen and Basalt football, with the two teams set to play each other Friday night on the AHS turf. The contest is a playoff game of sorts for both, with Aspen likely having to win to make the postseason. Basalt can likely still get in with a loss, although it’s probably not the preferred path.
In this week’s Rating Percentage Index (RPI), which will determine postseason seeding, Basalt is No. 7 in Class 2A and Aspen is No. 16. Only 16 teams will make the playoffs. Undefeated Rifle (8-0) is RPI No. 3 and Delta (7-1) is No. 5. Moffat County (5-3) is No. 14, while Coal Ridge (1-7) is No. 27.
Basalt enters Friday’s finale 6-2 overall after back-to-back losses to Delta and Rifle. Aspen is 4-4 overall after a 54-20 rout of Coal Ridge last week. The Skiers are trying to snap a five-game losing streak to the Longhorns, going back to a 21-10 win in 2013, the final season under coach Mike Sirko.
LAST WEEK FOR VOLLEYBALL
Along with soccer and football, the only other fall sport still going is volleyball. Aspen and Basalt each have a couple more games this week to finish out play, with neither expected to make it into a regional tournament.
AHS is scheduled to host Cedaredge on Tuesday night in its final home game, followed by a Thursday trip to Roaring Fork. Basalt volleyball is scheduled to host Lake County on Tuesday, followed by a Saturday trip to a tournament hosted by Bennett High School.
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Wayne Hall took a job as an air traffic controller at the Aspen-Pitkin County Airport in 2003 thinking he would stay for a short time. Instead he stayed for nearly 17 years and was promoted up to the position of air traffic manager. He reflected on the experience upon retirement.