Basalt beats Aspen in finale
Defender Jesse Schoeller scored two goals and Jamie Wirkler got the shutout as the Basalt High boys soccer team closed out its regular-season schedule with a 5-0 win over Aspen Tuesday afternoon at the BHS field.Basalt led 4-0 at halftime.Basalt, which already clinched a fourth consecutive Class 3A Western Slope League title, is headed next to the Class 3A state playoffs, likely with a top seed. Basalt gets a bye to the round of 16 and the ‘Horns will probably host their postseason opener next Tuesday or Wednesday.The Longhorns finished the regular season at 9-0-1 in league play and 13-1-1 overall.Aspen, which did not qualify for the playoffs, concluded its season at 2-7-1 in league play and 5-8-2 overall.”Basalt looked good,” said Aspen coach Grant “Junior” Sutherland. “They certainly had a lot of chances to score, so Fred Bernard was outstanding in goal for us. It was like an onslaught in the second half and he repulsed it.”They’re definitely strong and physical.”Senior Schoeller scored two goals for the Longhorns, including one booming blast from some 30 yards out. “A beautiful shot,” said Sutherland.Junior defender John Paul Fitzpatrick scored his first goal of the season, and Felipe Sanchez scored twice and had two assists. Ryan Zubizaretta, Cy Eaton and Luke Caudill also had assists for Basalt.”We came out strong like we have the last few games,” said Basalt coach Erik Streff. “We just need to learn to finish things off in the second half.””They’re great players and nice kids,” Sutherland said of Basalt. “We wish ’em well. And they should do well. They should control their destiny.”Basalt’s only loss of the season dates back to Sept. 3, their opener on the road at defending state champion Faith Christian.Aspen, meanwhile, is already looking forward to next season. “We’re just a young team and we’ve got to deal with it, suck it up and give it our best,” Sutherland continued, “and regroup and come back better next year.”I’m very proud with my kids being so young with what they’ve accomplished this season. And I want to thank [senior tri-captain] Colter Van Domelen for all he’s done in his four years. He’s given so much to Aspen High School.”
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The camp not only let the players shake the rust off, but it opened a window into the soul of Michael Goerne. A Minnesota native, Goerne moved to Carbondale soon after graduating from Marist College in New York and is largely credited for the massive growth of lacrosse in the valley.