Summit soccer season ends at Lewis-Palmer |

Summit soccer season ends at Lewis-Palmer

Richard Chittick
Summit Daily/Kara K. PearsonSummit's Jonathan Valenzuela (6) kicks the ball down the field as Lewis-Palmer players Mike Laband (16) and Adam Heath (9) close in during Thursday afternoon's state playoff match in Monument. Summit's Chris Nowakiwsky (15) trails the play. Lewis-Palmer rallied to eliminate the Tigers, 5-1.

MONUMENT – The Tigers magical season finally came to an end Thursday night, as a dominant Lewis-Palmer team showed why it’s been to the 4A state championship game five times in the last nine years.

Using indomitable speed and a definite size advantage, the Rangers took out a nervous group of Tigers, 5-1, in a Class 4A state quarterfinal game.

“We were so intimidated in the first half,” said head coach Peter Shafroth afterward.

“We played a lot better in the second half. I thought we played a better defense.”

Senior Stephen Chavez added, “We were hoping for a closer finish than this.”

Chavez got an assist on the Tigers only goal, which was finished with a beautiful header by sophomore Grant McGahey that simply floated over the Rangers goalkeeper roughly halfway through the second half.

The game was played at Lewis-Palmer High School in Monument, a suburb just north of Colorado Springs.

Right from the start, the Tigers were forced to play a scattered defensive game as over and over the Rangers got themselves on hard-charging breaks into Tiger territory.

Once they got in front of the net, they used a vicious passing game to thwart the Tiger defense, and at such close range, goalkeeper Kylor Dossett was nearly defenseless.

By the end of the first half, the Rangers, 1994 and 2000 4A state champions, had a three- goal lead.

Despite the loss, everyone showed amazing fortitude coming off the field, as players, coaches and parents patted each other on the back and smiled as the Tigers completed their most successful season ever.

The Tigers finished the year with a 11-6-1 overall record, going 6-2-0 in the Jeffco 10 League.

That record also includes a dramatic come-from-behind victory over Pueblo South, 4-2, last week in a regional playoff which gave the Tigers their berth into the state quarterfinals.

“No one expected us to go this far,” Chavez said.

Senior David Domagalski added: “Everything has been so unbelievable. It’s hard to be disappointed.” Dossett felt that the Tigers first appearance in the playoffs was a fantastic learning experience.

“I guess you just have to learn from this and come back next year.”

“We achieved more than I ever expected this year back in early August,” Shafroth said.

Coaching in his fifth year at Summit High School, Shafroth was the first to tell his players how proud he was of them at the end of the game.

“Seniors,” he said as the team came together at the end of the game, “don’t you ever forget what you had this year. In my 25 years of coaching, this has been the funnest – what an outstanding year.”

With that, the 18-player team came together with the hands all in the center, wrapped around the coach as he said,

“Now I want to hear the loudest “Tigers’ of the season.'”

And in unison, they all yelled, “One, Two, Three … TIGERS!”

Richard Chittick can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 236, or at

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