Basalt boys soccer holds off Vail, in position for outright league title
Three days after knocking off No. 3 Roaring Fork, Basalt High School boys soccer coach Brent Hayes simply wanted his team to avoid a letdown against visiting Vail Mountain on Friday.
While it wasn’t always pretty, the Longhorns did enough to hold on for a 2-1 win over the 9th-ranked Gore Rangers in Basalt. The game had originally been scheduled for Thursday but was pushed back a day because of weather.
“Having such a huge win, you see that quite a bit,” Hayes said of possible letdowns. “We got the ‘W’, which was awesome. We just didn’t play up to our capabilities.”
Basalt trailed 1-0 against Vail Mountain, and it took a goal from Gaby Bonilla in the final minutes of the first half to make it 1-1 at the midway point. The Longhorns were awarded a free kick about eight minutes into the second half when the VMS goalie grabbed the ball off a direct pass, which isn’t allowed, and Aaron Lopez made the most if it, his goal making it 2-1 in favor of Basalt.
The Rangers had plenty of chances late in the contest, including a shot that bounced off the left post only a second before the referees blew the final whistle to end the game.
“They had us on the ropes for that last 20,” Hayes said. “It’s what I talked about the other night with us being afraid of this game.”
Unranked Basalt improved to 7-7 overall with the win and 5-1 in 3A Western Slope League play. They are tied atop the WSL with Coal Ridge and Roaring Fork with a league loss each, although the Longhorns hold the tiebreaker against both schools.
BHS has only one regular-season game remaining, a trip to Delta late next week with the outright league title on the line.
After back-to-back finals that required dramatic rallies to win, the Gentlemen of Aspen Rugby Club was able to coast to its three-peat title on Sunday in the finale of the 55th annual Ruggerfest tournament.