Getting a friendly, sympathetic laugh out of field referee Larry Conrads, senior Krissy Velasquez’s second-half scream of a request for Ignacio’s defenders to clear the ball from just outside her goal box not only summarized how things were going Saturday, March 21, but also aptly captured the essence of inexperience – 14 players listed as either freshmen or sophomores – filling IHS’ 2015 roster.
Which, for a perpetually fledgling program that graduated a near-starting lineup’s worth of seniors last spring, isn’t necessarily worrying to skipper Oscar Cosio and new assistant Nikki Pearson. Just, to a more veteran squad like Lindsey Kurt-Mason’s – and most of the 3A/2A Southwestern League, really – susceptible to and vulnerable against veritable cannonades like the Lady Pirates’ besieging them upon IHS Field.
Sophomore Hayley Mitchell booked the first, and match-winning goal in just the eighth minute and added another in the 26th to help PSHS prevail 10-0 on the Lady Bobcats’ fast turf pitch.
Between denying shots and making other essential stops, Velasquez finished with 27 total saves unofficially but Springs senior Johannah Laverty (17’, 42’, 44’) and sophomore Megan Ellis (PK-11’, 58’, 74’) each registered a hat trick for the victors.
Freshman Alanah Gallegos also found the back of the net twice, in the 15th with the clash’s third goal and in the 76th with its tenth – bringing about the mercy-rule stoppage just short of full time, with senior goalie Sara Chronowski needing to make zero saves in keeping a clean sheet.
Telluride (2-2, 2-2 SWL as of Wednesday) then also blanked IHS two days later, 7-nil in a rare Monday match on the 23rd. Lady Miner freshman Hailey Byrom struck for three goals and sophomore Kenzie Zaumseil two.
Heading into an also-rare Wednesday afternoon trip to Ridgway, the Lady Bobcats’ lone goal – a penalty kick in a 5-1 season-opening home loss, March 12 to Center – belonged to junior Tristan Boone. And after the action on the 25th was concluded it still does; the Lady Demons (2-4, 1-3) prevailed 5-0, dropping IHS to 0-4, 0-4.
RHS got goals from senior Chiara Degenhardt, juniors Sarah Pankow and Jessie Walsh, and sophomores Hunter Clapsadl and Emma Gould to keep Ignacio far away on the scoresheet from goalie Saren Robinson.
ABOUT THE ASSISTANT
Replacing Tabitha Nickerson (currently working in the mathematics department at Sargent High School, north of Monte Vista in the San Luis Valley) as Cosio’s second-in-command this season, Pearson – no relation to former Lady Bobcat goalkeeper Savannah Pearson – was a former player at Glenwood Springs, graduating in 2010 after helping the Lady Demons reach the Class 4A State Tournament that May.
GSHS was upset in the opening Round of 32, 2-1 by Loveland Thompson Valley as the 21-seed ousted the #12, and the Western Slope League champs finished 14-2 overall under WSL Coach-of-the-Year Bryan Stoltzfus.