Summit girls’ lax sinks Fruita, snags title
summit daily news
Summit County, Colorado
FARMER’S KORNER – Friday’s game was billed as the biggest of the season for the Summit High girls’ lacrosse team. In a rematch of a narrow 7-5 Tiger win earlier in the season, Summit took on Fruita-Monument at home with everything on the line: a league title and a birth in the state playoffs.
It was win or go home; it was do or die; it was … a blowout?
All the drama of the title tilt was gone after about 15 minutes.
Summit scored all seven goals of the first half – including three straight from senior Bri Barto in the game’s first eight minutes – and cruised to a 9-3 win and the Mountain League title.
The quick start and dominating end result even surprised Summit’s players a bit.
“Traditionally, we’re a second-half team,” Barto said. “I think it meant a lot to a lot of the seniors and to our team, because it was going to be the last time we play on this field together.”
But it won’t be the last time the Tigers play this season. With the win, Summit is assured of a spot in the state playoffs.
“It’s an amazing accomplishment,” Barto said of the championship. “I remember when I was in fifth grade, I was the only girl that played. I had to play on the guys’ team. … To win a conference championship in any sport is astonishing, and to see how far we’ve come, it’s just great.”
Barto finished the game with four goals and three assists. Fellow senior Hayley Colvin scored twice, and senior Cody Seaboldt and sophomores Kelly Joyce and Ivy Marshall each added goals.
Freshman goalie Chelsea Christianson came up big for the Tigers once again. Despite facing only two shots on goal in the first half, Christianson made four key saves after the break to help thwart any hopes of a Fruita-Monument comeback.
Early on, though, it looked as if the Tigers’ opponent didn’t even show up.
Summit controlled the ball throughout the first half, and by the time Fruita-Monument even registered a shot, the Tigers had a 6-0 lead.
After Barto’s quick hat trick, Joyce buried a shot off a feed from Emily Bilenduke for the 4-0 lead. Colvin and Seaboldt then added goals, before Barto closed out the half with a quick shot into the back of the net with only 36.9 seconds remaining.
For assistant coach Kaitlin Chandler, who was filling in for SHS head coach Kristin Elliott in the game, the Tigers certainly made it an easy day of coaching.
“It wasn’t stressful or anything, just got to sit back and watch some beautiful offensive plays. It was great to see,” Chandler said.
Although Fruita-Monument would score three times in the second half, the closest the visitors would come was the final six-goal deficit.
“The first time we played them, it was really close. I’m surprised,” Christianson said of her team’s dominance. “I think we just wanted it more.”
The Tigers close the regular season at 12-3 and unbeaten in the Mountain League. Their playoff future won’t be determined for another couple of days.
Bryce Evans can be reached at (970) 668-4634 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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