Aspen’s Writer, Huber earn first-team honors
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
ASPEN – Imagine what kind of numbers Bo Writer could have accumulated had he played more than two varsity seasons.
Aspen High’s boys lacrosse team did not become sanctioned by the Colorado High School Activities Association until 2008, and did not play a full varsity schedule until 2009. Still, Writer has set the bar high.
The senior attackman wreaked havoc on opposing Mountain Conference defenses the last two seasons, piling up 62 goals and 35 assists in 28 games, head coach Mike Goerne said Tuesday. This season, Writer found the net 26 times and assisted on 19 other scores for Aspen, which finished 9-5.
For his efforts, Writer earned a second-consecutive all-conference first-team selection, as did defender Grant Huber.
Senior Nicky Fuller and junior Nicky Ufkes garnered second-team selections.
“Bo is just a natural at the game,” Goerne said. “He basically has the ability to take apart the defense. He’s very shifty, quick and agile, and at the same time always seems to be two steps ahead of the defense.”
Writer scored five goals and notched one assist in the Skiers’ season opener against Durango. He found the net three times and recorded six assists in the third game, helping propel Aspen to a program-best, four-game win streak.
He scored a point in all but two contests – in one of those, against Steamboat Springs, he was knocked out of the game after one quarter because of injury.
“He was just an all around, incredible attackman,” Goerne said.
While Writer was scoring goals, Huber helped keep opponents off the scoreboard. The senior, a two-time team captain, routinely embraced the challenge of shadowing some of the league’s most accomplished goal scorers – and often shut them down, Goerne said.
“He’s a tremendous leader and a hard, hard worker,” the coach added. “He never missed an opportunity to get better as a player. … It turned him into a guy that was physical, hard to beat and smart. He had a head for the game and understood what the offense was trying to do.”
Huber is planning to walk on at Mesa State in Grand Junction, which is making the jump to Division II in lacrosse in 2010-11.
“He’s the kind of kid that will do everything and anything to work to be at that level,” Goerne said. “He’s very eager and willing to learn as much as he can about the game. Grant’s drive will be a big factor in his success.”
Fuller, a second-team selection in 2009, scored 16 goals and two assists this spring – numbers that are more impressive when considering he missed a portion of the season while playing basketball.
The senior was a guard on the Skiers’ hoops squad that made a run to the 3A state championship game in March. The skills he honed on the hardwood translated well outdoors, Goerne said; Fuller displayed good field vision, a knack for finding open teammates and appeared comfortable in traffic around the goal.
Being one of the program’s first true ambidextrous scoring threats helped, too.
“It’s usually blatantly glaring which hand is a player’s stronger hand,” Goerne said. “Nick was such an offensive threat because the defense could never force him one way.”
Ufkes, on the other hand, typically utilized force over finesse, Goerne said. The junior, a standout running back on the Aspen football team, relied on speed and physical play to score 19 goals and assist on one other.
“Here’s a guy that can run through anybody,” Goerne said. “You better try to hit him with the body, because slapping at him with a stick is not going to do anything. If anything, it would speed him up, agitate him a bit. … He’s another one of those guys that you will not outwork.”
That effort paid off in key situations this season. Ufkes, a first-team selection in 2009, produced a game-winner in double overtime to lift the Skiers over Grand Junction. About a week later, he forced overtime against Battle Mountain after scoring with 5 seconds remaining in regulation.
Aspen will lean heavily on Ufkes next season – especially with 18 seniors graduating.
“He’s a quiet leader. When people see him dig deep, they dig deeper,” Goerne said. “We’re very excited to have him back. We have a lot of rebuilding to do and spots to be filled, but my goal is to … get that competitive fire going.”
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