Brackets set: Busy playoff week ahead for Aspen lacrosse, area girls soccer teams
AHS boys lacrosse will get things going on Tuesday night at home against Rangeview, AHS girls lacrosse and soccer will play Thursday
The boys lacrosse, girls lacrosse and girls soccer state tournament brackets were announced Sunday by the Colorado High School Activities Association, with the Roaring Fork Valley being well represented in all three.
Here’s a bracket-by-bracket breakdown of the seeds and matchups as the postseason gets underway.
Aspen High School boys lacrosse (8-6 overall) was awarded the No. 11 seed in the 24-team bracket in Class 4A and will play No. 22 Rangeview (10-5) in the first round on Tuesday. That game has been set for a tentative 5:45 p.m. start on the AHS turf.
According to the MaxPreps archive, the sides have never played in their history.
The teams did have a couple of mutual opponents from the regular season. Rangeview played Summit on March 25, winning 10-9 in overtime. AHS easily beat Summit twice, including in Saturday’s senior night game. Rangeview also played Resurrection Christian in a May 5 league game, losing 13-9. Aspen hosted Resurrection Christian on April 27, winning 16-3.
The winner of Tuesday’s game between Aspen and Rangeview will play in the Round of 16 on Friday at No. 6 seed Vail Mountain School (12-3). The Gore Rangers won the 4A Western league that Aspen also plays in, splitting the season series with the Skiers. AHS beat VMS in overtime on March 24, but lost 7-4 in the critical league rematch on April 29.
For the complete boys lacrosse bracket, click here.
The winner of Friday’s game would most likely earn a trip to face defending 4A champion and No. 3 seed Cheyenne Mountain in the state quarterfinals on May 17. That is, unless No. 14 Battle Mountain or No. 19 Ponderosa pulls an upset in the second round.
This is Aspen’s first trip to the postseason since the 2019 season when it lost 10-5 in the first round to Evergreen. There was no 2020 season because of the pandemic, and the 2021 season was condensed for the same reason.
Denver South (14-1) earned the No. 1 overall seed in this year’s tournament and like the rest of the top eight seeds will have a first-round bye. Denver South will play either No. 16 Evergreen — last year’s state runner-up — or No. 17 Steamboat Springs in the second round.
Also of note, Eagle Valley earned the No. 8 seed and will get the early bye. Telluride is No. 13 and will face No. 20 Jefferson Academy in the first round.
The state semifinals are scheduled for May 21 and the championship game is May 23, both to be held at the University of Denver’s Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium.
Aspen has once won the state championship in boys lacrosse, that coming with a win over Valor Christian in the 2015 finale in Class 4A. Boys lacrosse divided into two classifications from one beginning with the 2013 season.
In girls lacrosse, Aspen was awarded the No. 7 seed to earn one of the eight coveted first-round byes in the 4A state tournament. The Skiers (11-4 overall) will host a Round of 16 game on Thursday against the winner of No. 10 Cherokee Trail (9-6) and No. 23 Rampart (7-8), who play in Tuesday’s first round.
According to the MaxPreps archive, which only dates to the 2008 season, Aspen has never played either team in its relatively short history.
For the complete girls lacrosse bracket, click here.
This is only the second season there has been a 4A classification in girls lacrosse — prior to 2021, all teams played in one unified classification across the state — with Evergreen beating Castle View to win the 4A championship last spring.
Evergreen is back as the No. 1 seed in this year’s state tournament, with Thompson Valley at No. 2 and Castle View at No. 3.
An unlikely but theoretically possible quarterfinal matchup for Aspen could be against Roaring Fork (9-6), which earned the No. 15 seed and will host No. 18 Fruita Monument (7-8) on Tuesday night in the first round. That winner will face No. 2 Thompson Valley in the Round of 16 on Thursday, with the victor moving on to face the winner of Aspen’s second-round game.
Eagle Valley is the tournament’s No. 17 seed and will play No. 16 Holy Family in the first round, the winner getting top-seeded Evergreen in the second round. Battle Mountain is the No. 9 seed and will host No. 24 Telluride in the opener, the winner playing No. 8 Northfield in the second round. Grand Junction came in at No. 21, and will play at No. 12 Dawson School in the first round, the winner getting No. 5 Green Mountain.
The girls semifinals are scheduled for May 18 at Englewood High School, and the final will be May 20 at the University of Denver’s Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium.
The Aspen girls are seeking their first state championship. Their previous best postseason run came in 2019, the last full season before the pandemic, when the Skiers lost to Valor Christian in the state quarterfinals.
In girls soccer, Aspen (11-3-1) has earned the No. 9 seed in the 32-team bracket and will face No. 24 DSST: Conservatory Green (10-3) in the first round on Thursday. The game will be played on the AHS turf, although a game time was not yet known as of Sunday evening. It’ll be part of a playoff two-fer that Thursday night with AHS girls lacrosse.
For the complete girls soccer bracket, click here.
AHS and Conservatory Green have not had any mutual opponents this season, nor have they played each other in recent memory. The winner will play either No. 8 Manitou Springs (11-3-1) or No. 25 St. Mary’s Academy (6-9) in the second round.
The Skiers were the No. 15 seed in the condensed 16-team state tournament last spring, and pulled a first-round stunner when they knocked off No. 2 Manitou Springs in the first round. AHS then lost to No. 10 Colorado Academy in the second round, 5-0, with the Mustangs advancing all the way to the final before losing to No. 1 Kent Denver, 1-0.
Basalt girls soccer (5-9-1) also made this year’s state tournament field as the No. 27 seed and will play at No. 6 seed Colorado Springs Christian (13-1-1) in the first round on Thursday. That game has been tentatively scheduled for 5 p.m. at UCCS Mountain Lion Stadium in Colorado Springs. The winner will face either No. 11 Liberty Common (12-3) or No. 22 Stargate School (7-8) in the second round.
BHS last made the postseason in 2019, falling 7-2 against Salida in the first round. Basalt has not played Colorado Springs Christian in recent memory, according to MaxPreps.
Roaring Fork (6-8-1) made this year’s state tournament as the No. 23 seed and will play in the first round at No. 10 Eagle Ridge Academy (12-2-1) in Brighton.
Western Slope League champion Vail Mountain (13-2) is the No. 4 seed and will host No. 29 Severance (7-8) in the first round. Delta (10-5) is the No. 14 seed and hosts No. 19 Salida (10-4) in their playoff opener.
Kent Denver (13-1) is again the No. 1 overall seed and plays No. 32 The Pinnacle (8-7) in the first round. Jefferson Academy is the No. 2 seed and Colorado Academy the No. 3 seed.
The long drives to Denver to play competitive club softball and fine-tune her skills during the offseason are paying off for Glenwood Springs High School senior Kiera Larson.