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Lacrosse: Devils score victory in Aspen

Jon Maletz
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN – The Aspen boys lacrosse team experienced a deep freeze Thursday – and it was not just the weather.

The careless mistakes and missed shots piled up quickly for the home team against Eagle Valley. While the Skiers twice overcame deficits to square the game in the opening half, they repeatedly were hamstrung by porous defense and stagnant offense.

The Devils took advantage, pulling out a 10-6 win and avenging a three-goal loss to Aspen in March 11’s season opener.



“That game came down to nothing more than the fundamentals of lacrosse,” Skiers coach Mike Goerne opined. “Eagle Valley shot incredibly well. They really took advantage of the opportunities we gave them. I doubt we shot over 30 percent. … When you can’t finish shots from 10 yards and in, there are some skills that need to be worked on.”

The Devils had no such problem finding the net. They struck for three goals in a one-minute stretch midway through the first quarter to seize control of the game. The first was scored when the ball took a fortuitous bounce off an Aspen defender. Eagle Valley won the ensuing face-off, Kyle Newborn controlled a pass out wide and faced no resistance as he sprinted straight to the Skiers cage and went low to beat goaltender Daniel Ryerson.




Aspen regrouped, stringing together three quick goals of its own. Lawson Pisani put the Skiers on the board with

4 minutes, 18 seconds remaining in the first quarter when he picked off an attempted clear, sprinted to the middle of the field and fired a shot that clipped the net.

Aspen took advantage of a man-up situation to score two goals a few minutes later; an accurate pass set up Brendan Wagner for an easy conversion, then Peter Aresty launched a low liner from more than 10 yards out to square the game.

It took Eagle Valley less than 30 seconds to counter; a defensive breakdown by the Skiers resulted in a Devils breakaway and score.

Wagner tied things at four about eight minutes before half when he generated some free space in Eagle Valley’s zone defense and converted a shot from close range. The momentum was short-lived, however, as Daniel Varges struck twice in a five-minute span to give the Devils a

6-4, halftime advantage.

Varges led all scorers with four goals.

“Lacrosse is a game of bunches. … Eagle Valley capitalized on those scoring streaks. We didn’t,” Goerne said. “Our goals were sporadic. We weren’t able to string a few together.”

Aspen pulled to within one on another Pisani score in the opening minute of the third quarter, but Tyler Keegan pushed the Devils’ lead back to two about 3 minutes later.

The advantage ballooned to three in the early stages of the fourth. Wagner’s acrobatic score as he was falling to the turf with 5:32 on the clock helped Aspen cut the deficit to two, but the Skiers would pull no closer.

An apparent goal from Jack Jensen in the waning minutes was negated after officials ruled that the Aspen player was using an illegal stick.

With the loss, the Skiers dropped to 5-5 in their final game before Ex-Ed. They will not play again until April 26, when they visit Battle Mountain.

jmaletz@aspentimes.com


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