Aspen boys lacrosse wins fifth straight, eyes key Vail Mountain showdown
Skiers, Gore Rangers will play at 5:30 p.m. Friday in Aspen
It seems the Aspen High School boys lacrosse team has its mojo back.
A proud program — AHS won the Class 4A state championship in 2015 — the Skiers had it rough in the condensed pandemic season of 2021, going a mere 2-8 overall last spring. But after Wednesday’s rout of Resurrection Christian, Aspen has ripped off five straight wins and looks like a team that’ll be a tough out come the postseason.
“I could see it through the summer. The boys really wanted it and they were coming out and putting the work in,” said fourth-year AHS coach Tommy Cox. “The most important thing and the reason we have changed is they are playing for one another. The brotherhood is back and I couldn’t be more excited.”
The Skiers hosted the Cougars (now 4-6 overall) on Wednesday afternoon, cruising to a 16-3 win on the AHS turf. It was far less dramatic than the previous two wins, which both came in overtime over Grand Junction and Battle Mountain.
Aspen was 2-3 overall after a 12-11 overtime loss at Eagle Valley on April 6, but now finds itself 7-3 overall as it enters a critical stretch of games.
“We are rolling. We’ve got a good battle coming up ahead of us on Friday and then we have Eagle after that. So we’ve got some games left to play and games left to win,” Cox said. “Some areas for improvement today and that’s where the focus was going through halftime is let’s make sure we dial in everything and get right for our upcoming games.”
The most important game of the season for Aspen could be Friday’s 5:30 p.m. home affair with Vail Mountain. The Gore Rangers are 11-2 overall and ranked No. 7 in Class 4A this week through CHSAANow.com. Aspen is effectively ranked No. 12.
Photos: AHS boys lacrosse vs Resurrection Christian
It’s worth noting those two VMS losses. One came this past Monday at unranked Golden, 11-7, while the first came back on March 24 when Aspen knocked off the Gore Rangers in overtime, winning 8-7 in Vail.
A season sweep of VMS would put Aspen in position for the league title, with Eagle Valley being the third contender. The Skiers and Devils play on Wednesday in Aspen.
“It’s a massive game for us and we are well aware of it. We’ve been preparing for a couple of weeks for this now and I feel we are ready,” Cox said of Friday’s game with Vail Mountain. “Of course, it’s more fun to rack up wins, but the real fun is seeing the boys bond, seeing them in the locker room, seeing them out to dinner with each other and really grow as a unit. That’s where the fun is.”
Friday’s game is part of an AHS lacrosse two-fer that day, as the Aspen girls (7-3 overall) will host Summit (1-10) in a game that has been moved up to 4 p.m. and will be played across the street on Iselin Field. The AHS girls beat Summit the first time they played on March 24, winning 21-1.
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