Aspen boys lacrosse loses to Fruita in first game back from spring break
Every time the Aspen High School boys lacrosse team thought it had an answer, visiting Fruita Monument seemed to have two more questions to solve.
Seemingly a step behind all game, the Skiers simply couldn’t keep pace with the Wildcats on Wednesday evening, losing 14-9 on the AHS turf in their first game since March 20, prior to spring break.
“We have a good, solid, skilled team,” AHS coach Tommy Cox said. “We seem to be, at times, making mistakes, stick penalties, things of that nature. If we were to come out and just play the game we know we can play, we ultimately would have had a victory today.”
Barely 90 seconds into the game and Aspen sophomore Tyler Ward had put the Skiers up 1-0. But Fruita responded and took a 3-2 lead into the second quarter and a 7-4 lead into the halftime break.
Not much improved for Aspen after that, outside of two late third-quarter goals that got AHS within 10-8 heading to the fourth. The Skiers would get no closer, however, Fruita making the final few minutes mostly a formality.
The Wildcats improved to 4-1 overall with the win and moved to 3-0 in league play. Their only loss is to Class 5A Rocky Mountain on March 30, 8-4.
Aspen fell to 1-2 overall and 0-1 in league play. The team lost in overtime to Battle Mountain in the season opener on March 18 before beating Vail Mountain two days later, 11-9.
Despite the failures on Wednesday, Cox remains confident in a group that was preseason No. 5 in Class 4A but has since fallen out of the CHSAANow.com rankings.
“We had kids all over the world and it’s hard to come back from a week off from lacrosse,” Cox said of spring break. “The boys are strong. They are going to come back hard from this at the end of this week, and we will take some more victories, for sure.”
The Skiers next play Friday at Ponderosa (4-2), ranked No. 9 in 4A this week, before hosting Montrose (1-4) on Saturday afternoon.
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Once the Aspen High School defense woke up — random 4 p.m. kickoffs need some getting used to — the Skiers were able to dictate Saturday’s football game en route to a 22-7 victory over visiting Steamboat Springs on the AHS turf.