The Tigers girls soccer team kicked off the Summit High School spring sports season Thursday with a tough 1-0 loss at home to league rival Steamboat Springs.
“Our girls played fantastic,” head coach Tommy Gogolen said. “We had a couple opportunities we didn’t capitalize on.”
The Tigers kept the game scoreless into the 75th minute, when an unintentional hand ball set the Sailors up with a free kick near the Summit goal. Steamboat was able to take advantage and put the ball past sophomore Tigers keeper Lexi Vanderhoeven with 5 minutes left to play in the game.
“Steamboat’s a great team. They deserved to win,” Gogolen said. “It was a heartbreaker, but the girls were energized by it.”
Hoping to change their fortunes, the team then traveled to Eagle Valley on Saturday for a match up against the Devils. Summit hung in early, down 1-0, but Devils’ junior standout Mariel Gutierrez proved to much for the Tigers, accounting for a hat trick to give Eagle Valley a 4-1 win.
“I think they caught us a little off guard,” Gogolen said, adding that the Tiger again failed to capitalize on offensive opportunities. “We had a couple key players out.”
Gogolen described Gutierrez as easily one of the top players in the state. “She picked our defense apart,” he said of her effort in the second half.
Still, he believes his team is headed in the right direction. “Our girls put up a good fight. They know that they’re much improved. Ultimately, Eagle outplayed us.”
The team will face its next big challenge this week when it hosts league power Battle Mountain Thursday, March 13.
“We’ve got a tough week ahead of us. They’re always one of the top teams in the state,” Gogolen said. “It’ll be a good test for sure.”
Following the game against Battle Mountain, the team will travel to Rifle, Saturday, March 15.
Spring sports wrap-up
Boys lacrosse: The boys lacrosse team opened its season with an 8-5 win at home against Fruita Monument Saturday. The team will host Glenwood Springs Tuesday, March 11, then travel to Grand Junction Saturday, March 15.
Girls lacrosse: The girls lacrosse home opener against Dakota Ridge Thursday was canceled due to weather. The game has yet to be rescheduled. The team will open its season Tuesday at Valor Christian, then travel to Palmer Ridge Thursday, March 13. The team has its first home game Friday, March 14, against Palmer High School.
Baseball: The Tigers’ season-opening doubleheader at Jefferson Saturday was canceled due to snow. The team will travel to Clear Creak Tuesday, then to Rifle Saturday, March 15.
Track: The track and field team opened its season at Liberty, though results were not available at press time. The team will travel to Rifle for its next meet Friday, March 14.