Five-goal outburst propels Basalt soccer over CRMS |

Five-goal outburst propels Basalt soccer over CRMS

Jon Maletz
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
Jim Ryan contributed photoLonghorns senior Omar Lopez fires a shot past CRMS goalkeeper Frank Adgate on Saturday at Basalt High School.

BASALT – The Basalt soccer team overlooked Colorado Rocky Mountain School when the two squared off two weeks ago. It didn’t happen again.

The Longhorns struck for two goals in the first 13 minutes Saturday, and pushed their lead to three right before the half. They continued to apply pressure during the second half en route to a convincing 5-1 win – two weeks to the day after their shocking 2-1 loss in Carbondale.

“We now know we have to be aggressive and can’t underestimate any other team,” Longhorns head coach John McDermott said. “They have found their style.”

That style? Go on the attack early and often. Basalt’s pressure produced a corner kick in the sixth minute. CRMS keeper Frank Adgate tried to flick the ball out play, but it slipped through his gloves. Longhorns senior Jake Wirkler was standing all alone on the far corner and converted an easy tap-in.

Wirkler was in the middle of the action once more in the 13th minute. He pushed the ball up the middle before passing off to a streaking Reba Liuzzi up the right side. Liuzzi beat his defender, then Adgate with a powerful grounder.

“We had a lack of shooting last time,” Basalt’s Omar Lopez said. “We played well [today]. It looks like we’re finally clicking.

“This was a big one. We had to come out and win.”

CRMS pulled to within one in the 30th minute when, after one player hit the crossbar, Luke Falcone headed home the deflection.

The Longhorns (4-3-1 overall, 3-2 3A Western Slope) answered back in the final minute of the half. Santiago Marciani lofted a perfect corner into the box, and Johny Diaz one-timed the ball out of the air and into the net near the far post to restore Basalt’s two-goal advantage.

“Basalt is a good team, and they made some adjustments [since the last game]. Obviously, it worked for them,” CRMS head coach Dan Pittz said. “We weren’t organized, and we weren’t where this team can be. That’s disappointing. … There was a lack of communication, and a lack of individual response on the defensive end.”

Those defensive breakdowns continued to haunt CRMS (3-1-1) during a second half in which the Longhorns controlled the midfield and continued to bombard Adgate. Fletcher Richman dribbled hard up the left side in the 73rd minute, then passed off to Lopez, who tucked the ball into the bottom left corner with a powerful boot.

Less than 5 minutes later, Adgate mishandled another corner. Basalt senior Ruben Lainez knocked home the deflection.

“We came out last time and played a possession game, a much smarter game. We wanted to be in control, and we kept control,” Pittz said. “Today, we saw barely a glimpse of that. … It’s just regrouping time. By no means is this end of our season.”

The Longhorns, who have scored 10 goals in their last two games, appear to have shaken off their early season inconsistencies. They visit Coal Ridge at 4 p.m. Thursday.

“We’re out of the paddock and entering the first straight,” McDermott joked. “We have a few left-hand turns to make. … [Our potential] is not fully out, but it will be.”

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