Lady ‘Horns pound Aspen 7-0
Sophomore Maddie Hoffman scored a hat trick and senior Brittany Pollock added two goals as the Basalt High girls soccer team pounded rival Aspen 7-0 Thursday afternoon at the BHS field.
Fighting a steady breeze in the first half, Basalt managed just two goals, both courtesy of Hoffman. In the five-goal second-half outburst, Pollock, who started the game at sweeper on defense, shifted up to midfield and scored in the first and last minutes of the half, sandwiching her two goals around three other Lady Longhorns scores.
Senior Shannon Hutton and freshman Katie Staerkel also scored for Lady Longhorns, while senior center-midfielder Ashley Eaton tallied three assists and Hoffman and seniors Amanda Schmitt and Ukare Sano had one apiece.
“In the first half, we thought we’d weather the storm against the wind, and we were quite pleased to take a 2-0 lead,” said Basalt coach Chris Woods. “But in the second half, we wanted to go for the jugular – and we did.”
“We tired some new combinations, like putting Brittany [Pollock] up on attack, and it worked.”
Basalt improved to 6-1 overall and 5-0 in Class 3A Western Slope League play. Aspen dropped to 2-5 overall and 2-2 in league.
Basalt senior goalie Autumn Caughern recorded the shutout, her second straight including Tuesday’s 3-0 blanking of the Class 5A Grand Junction Central on the road.
Junior “Deanna Spracher, easily the fastest player on our team, had another great game,” said Woods, “and our defense was solid with Brittany, Rochelle [Moebius] and Amanda [Schmitt].”
With the win over Central on Tuesday, Basalt moved up from No. 6 to No. 5 in the Class 3A state rankings by the Rocky Mountain News.
Aspen coach John Gillies, who has been on the losing side of the BHS-AHS rivalry in girls soccer in recent years, said his team was “embarrassed” with the defeat.
“They’re embarrassed and hopefully they’ll go away and feel some shame,” he said. “Because if they feel shame, maybe that’ll draw some passion out of them. [Seniors] Lindsey Patterson and Elly Harder are the only girls getting after it. … And [senior goalie] Merritt Gates had a good game, too, considering all the action she saw.”
“We need the humiliation,” Gillies continued, “because we looked bad.”
On Saturday at 3 p.m. in Carbondale, Basalt takes on CRMS. And on Tuesday at 4 p.m. in Carbondale, Basalt kicks off with Roaring Fork for a makeup game postponed last week due to snow.
Aspen, meanwhile, travels to Eagle Valley Saturday for a 11 a.m. match.
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Had Hailey Swirbul decided against going to Europe, she would not have finished with a career-best result in Friday’s World Cup opener. Yes, there was a time, and not long ago, when the U.S. ski team member and Roaring Fork Valley native questioned her desire to put on a race bib.