Soccer: Aspen comes up short against Peak to Peak |

Soccer: Aspen comes up short against Peak to Peak

Jon Maletz
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

LAFAYETTE, Colo. – The Aspen girls held their own against Peak to Peak in Wednesday’s 3A soccer playoff opener in Lafayette.

The 28th-seeded Skiers could not overcome an early deficit, however. The No. 5 Pumas scored once in the first half and led by as many as three goals in the second half en route to the 3-1 win.

Peak to Peak has dispatched a Western Slope opponent in postseason play each of the last two seasons; it topped Basalt, 3-2, in the second round last spring.

“We were pretty evenly matched,” Aspen head coach John Gillies said. “If they were No. 5, then we certainly weren’t No. 28.

“The girls showed a lot of heart. That’s all we can ask of them. They’re certainly a young team, and they played well against a top-ranked Denver team.”

The Pumas (12-3-1) pulled ahead on a first-half score from junior Emily Gardner. Teammate Galen Roda scored twice in the second, giving the home team a three-goal cushion with little more than 15 minutes to play.

“After that second goal, if we got one back we could’ve rallied,” Gillies said. “The defense played well. Unfortunately, their deflections fell to their feet. If they fell to ours, we could’ve cleared. … We just got tired.”

Junior Tatianna Armstrong found the net in the waning moments of the second half for Aspen, which fell to 8-6-1.

“I’m pretty happy,” Gillies said, “but you don’t want to come in fourth in your league and be seeded 28th. … It’s important to get in that top two and get a better seeding.

“Now, they’ve got to decide what they want to do, if they want to get together for just 10 weeks next year or be inspired to continue to work on some skills. We’re probably three players off from being a really great team.”

Peak to Peak will host a second-round game Saturday against the winner of No. 21 Basalt and No. 12 Telluride. The Longhorns’ and Miners’ first-round tussle was postponed Wednesday because of inclement weather. The sides are slated to square off at 4 p.m. Thursday in Grand Junction.

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