Aspen and Roaring Fork tie at 3-all

Tim Mutrie
Aspen's Stephen Buzbee (7) jostles with Roaring Fork's Omar Garcia near the Roaring Fork net during the first half Tuesday in Aspen. Aspen Times photo/Paul Conrad.

Aspen and Roaring Fork played to a 3-3 tie Tuesday afternoon at the AHS field, further muddying the playoff picture for the Class 3A Western Slope League.The stalemate carried over from a 2-all deadlock at halftime with a 3-3 tie at the end of regulation. And after two five-minute overtime periods, no victor emerged.Aspen stands at 1-5-1 in league play while Roaring Fork stands at 2-4-2.Basalt and Vail Mountain have clinched two of three state playoff berths from the league, while the third and final berth remains undetermined. CRMS (3-5), Paonia (2-5-1), Roaring Fork and Aspen all stand a chance to claim the berth as the final games play out in the next week.Aspen’s chances are slim, however.”For us to make it,” said Aspen coach Grant “Junior” Sutherland, “is basically Paonia to beat Roaring Fork, Roaring Fork to beat CRMS, and us to beat Vail, CRMS and Basalt.

“So it’s very slim,” he added.Roaring Fork’s Noe Duran put the Rams on the board first with a one-timer blast past Aspen goalie Fred Bernard off a well-struck cross in the 7th minute.Aspen answered on a similar play in the 11th minute when Stephen Buzbee found a wide-open Tyler Moore in front of the Roaring Fork goal. Moore wheeled and one-timed a shot into the net to even the score at 1-all.Roaring Fork’s effective counterattack produced another goal in the 25th when an Aspen defensive breakdown enabled Miguel Montdragon to slip through the backline for a breakaway. Montdragon finished it with a shot to the left post to put the Rams up once more, 2-1.In the 32nd, Aspen’s Carlos Rojas evened it up at 2-all on a penalty-kick goal.In the second half, Rojas added another goal for Aspen, while Montdragon struck again for Roaring Fork to preserve the tie.

“We had seven kids out with injuries, but I thought we played well,” said Aspen’s Sutherland. “I thought Ryder Fyrwald and Jamie Bernard were outstanding for us.”Basalt 9, Paonia 0Basalt remained undefeated in league play with a 9-0 win at Paonia Tuesday afternoon.Cy Eaton scored four goals and had three assists as Basalt improved to a league-leading 7-0-1, and 10-1-1 overall.”We looked good,” said Basalt coach Erik Streff. “The passing is coming along and things are finally starting to come together.”Jamie Wirkler recorded the shutout in goal for Basalt.

Other Longhorn scorers included Felipe Sanchez (2), Ben Pollock (2) and Trevor Brown (1). Ryan Zubizaretta and Sanchez had two assists each, and Pollock and Kyle Logan had one apiece.Basalt is seeking a fourth consecutive league title, a title that will likely be decided when the Longhorns host Vail Mountain on Thursday at 4 p.m. at the BHS field. Vail Mountain entered Tuesday at 4-0-3 in league play.”I’m not exactly sure how it’ll play out,” Streff said of the league standings, “so we’re looking at the Vail Mountain game as the league championship game.”