Soccer: Quick-strike Basalt routs Hotchkiss

Jon Maletz
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

BASALT – Once his young Longhorns round into form, Basalt head soccer coach John McDermott says “it’s going to be scary” for the opposition.

Tuesday’s game with visiting Hotchkiss provided a glimpse. The Longhorns erupted for four goals in the first 10 minutes of the second half – two coming from Willy Salamanca, who recorded a hat trick in just 45 minutes – and rolled to a 7-1 rout over the Bulldogs.

“We probably weren’t as intense as we should’ve been,” McDermott said. “We started off with a mistake, but we definitely had the control the whole game.”

That mistake came in the opening minute, when some miscommunication on the back line led to an own goal that gave Hotchkiss a short-lived 1-0 lead.

Basalt responded soon after, when Salamanca passed off to Jacob Musser for the equalizer. About 20 minutes later, Santiago Marciani took on two defenders and fired a shot on Bulldogs goalkeeper Jonathan Holiman; Salamanca cleaned up the deflection with a strong boot that hit the net.

“I just tried to follow the ball and try my hardest,” Salamanca said.

That effort produced a special afternoon for the sophomore. In the 42nd minute, Salamanca corralled another deflection and scored, stretching the lead to 3-1. Little more than two minutes later, he confidently one-timed a pass from Sergio Andrade into the bottom left corner of the net.

“Like I’ve said, we’re very young and we don’t have players coming out and committing at the start,” McDermott said. “Once we pick it up, they get right in there … and start to emerge from their shells.”

Brandon Medero joined in the scoring in the 48th minute, rattling the net with a low liner. Sebastian Liuzzi followed with a goal two minutes later; he controlled a pass up the near sideline and ripped a shot past a diving Holiman.

Liuzzi knifed his way through a pack of defenders in the 73rd minute and added another score for the Longhorns, who improved to 5-2.

“I think we can play better, pressure more the ball,” Salamanca said. “I think we’re getting better and better every game.”

Basalt visits Roaring Fork at 4 p.m. Thursday, then travels to Aspen on Saturday to take on the rival Skiers.