Roaring Fork rallies past Aspen soccer, 3-1 | AspenTimes.com

Roaring Fork rallies past Aspen soccer, 3-1

Dale Strode
The Aspen Times

The Skiers' goal came in a flurry of quick passes late in the first half.

A burst ahead on a through ball gave Aspen's Erik Gagen a shot, which bounced off the Roaring Fork goalkeeper.

John Heaphey, of the Skiers, smashed home the rebound goal for a 1-0 lead in Tuesday's conference soccer showdown at Aspen High School.

The Skiers, desperately in need of another win in a frustrating season, took the 1-0 lead to halftime and carried it midway through the second half against the Rams from Carbondale.

But Roaring Fork, with an oppressive offensive attack in the second half, scored three goals in the final 27 minutes of play for a 3-1 victory over the Skiers.

Eric Carillo, of the Rams, controlled the ball in front of the Aspen net and volleyed home the tying goal.

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Gustavo Oliva broke the 1-1 tie in the 67th minute of play in the 80-minute match. He headed home a perfect assist from teammate Zack Ritchie for a 2-1 Roaring Fork lead.

The final goal came inside 2 minutes when Ben Carpenter converted a penalty kick for the Rams after a foul was called inside the Aspen box.

"We made some tactical adjustments at halftime," Roaring Fork first-year head coach Nicholas Forbes said. "We … wanted to use the width of the field."

He said the Rams needed a wake-up call.

"Getting the goal scored on us sparked a bit of an awakening for us," Forbes said. "Sometimes it takes a little sting to get them going."

He said that once the Rams used the wider field they were able to attack more effectively — to the tune of 14 shots in the second half, 24 total.

"This was a league game, which is huge. Aspen is always a good program, and this is a great place to play," Forbes said after Roaring Fork improved to 7-2-1 overall, 2-1-0 in conference.

"I feel for these boys now," Aspen head coach Dave Francis said after the agonizing loss. "They deserve to have gotten more out of these games."

He said the Skiers played very well in the first half when they controlled possession in Roaring Fork's half of the field.

"We controlled the game for long periods of time. But we've been sick. We've had some guys out …. and you could tell. They ran out of energy (in the second half)," Francis said.

"But this one is tough," he said, agonizing over three penalty shot goals allowed in the last three games.

"But we know where we're going. And we're going to keep fighting and working to get results," Francis said.

The Skiers (1-8-0, 1-3-0 in league) are scheduled to host Montezuma-Cortez (1-8-0) in a 1 p.m game Saturday at Aspen High School.

Roaring Fork will host league-leading Vail Mountain School on Oct. 8.

dstrode@aspentimes.com