Summit soccer lose heartbreaker to Steamboat, 0-2 |

Summit soccer lose heartbreaker to Steamboat, 0-2

John F. Russell
Steamboat Pilot and Today

Summit vs. Steamboat — Oct. 18

1st 2nd Final

Summit 0 0 0

SSHS 1 1 2

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — There will be a showdown in Edwards this week after the Steamboat Springs Sailors held on to beat the Summit Tigers in a rain-soaked contest Tuesday at Gardner Field 2-0.

“I’ve been thinking about it all season,” Steamboat’s Quinn Connell said about playing Battle Mountain for the title. “It’s for the league and I just hope we can get it done.”

To set up the showdown, the Sailors had to knock off the Summit Tigers on Tuesday at Gardner Field. The Sailors lost 4-2 to the Tigers earlier this season, and on Tuesday, Summit brought its A-game, hoping to keep its own post-season dreams alive.

“We had to win this game,” Tigers goalkeeper Kyle Wertz said after the game. “If I don’t show up it’s all over. I think winning is the goal every time we step on the field, and that was my goal tonight.”

Wertz did his best to shut down the Sailors’ aggressive offensive attack most of the night, and finished the game with 17 saves on 19 shots. However, Steamboat was able to find the back of the net when it needed, including an early goal that put the pressure on the Summit players.

“Our boys left it on the field tonight,” Summit coach Tommy Gogolen said. “Steamboat played a great game and they deserved the win.”

The Sailors netted what turned out to be the game-winning goal only nine minutes into the game, when Connell was able to get a nice through ball to teammate Will McConnell, who was able to beat Wertz for the goal.

Steamboat outshot Summit in the first half 14-7, and the Sailors had several great opportunities turned away by the Tigers’ keeper.

At the half, Steamboat honored the senior class. At the same time Gogolen laid it on the line, telling his players they needed 40 minutes of the team’s best soccer if they wanted to keep their playoff dreams alive. The players responded in the second half with an aggressive push that threatened to break Steamboat’s defense at several points.

“I thought we had our chances, unfortunately the ball just didn’t go into the back of the net tonight,” Gogolen said. “We have to give credit to Steamboat. Their defense was really solid tonight.”

In fact, the team got some great stops in its defense half, including a couple of stops from Coffey, and a few saved from McCawley in the goal. But the Sailors’ big break came from the offense in the 67th minute. Steamboat’s Archuleta was able to make a run up the middle of the field before making a nice pass to Anderson on the outside. Anderson took the ball to the right side of the penalty box, before sending the perfect crossing pass in front of the Summit net. Connell, who was standing near the 6-yard line, headed the ball into the back of the net to give the Sailors the cushion they so desperately needed in the final stretch of the game.

“There was lot of pressure for them, and they had most of the possession,” Connell said. “I think that goal really put it away. … I think that killed their spirit at a pretty critical point of the game.”

The Tigers will wrap up the regular season today against the last-place Rifle Bears at home for Senior Night.

The Sailors will head to Edwards today to take on the Battle Mountain Huskies, who are currently sitting atop the Western Slope standings.

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