Titans’ soccer stalls in weekend matches

League record drops to 2-2-1

Coming into last weekend’s two games, the Crested Butte Titans were at a crossroads. With a 2-1 record, two wins would catapult the Titans into second place in the league and set them up for a playoff run in the second half of the season. Anything else would leave the team’s season in a state of flux.
Unfortunately, the Titans would be missing one key starter for their Friday home game against the Telluride Miners and two starters for their road game against the Pagosa Springs Pirates on Saturday.
The Miners and Titans have a rich tradition of competition in both soccer and hockey, and it bubbled up once again at Rainbow Field.
With a restructured defense, the Titans struggled to mark up players in their defensive third for most of the game. Junior goalie Ben Frame was on fire in net though keeping the game locked in a 0-0 tie until the 18th minute when the Titans broke the scoreless stand off.
Freshman Graham Koval took a pass 40 yards from Telluride’s net and turned to find freshman Jesse Reeves sprinting to goal on the weak side.
Koval slipped a pass to Reeves midstride and Reeves blasted the shot past the Miner goalie, giving the Titans a 1-0 lead.
The game continued back and forth for the remainder of the first half with the Miners threatening on several occasions. Frame remained true in goal but a misplay on a corner kick deflected off of two Titan defenders and into the net sending the two teams into the halftime knotted up in a 1-1 tie.
The second half played out much like the first with Frame solid in net. Crested Butte rallied for a handful of opportunities in the Miner’s penalty area but the Telluride goalie turned away each shot.
The Miners broke the tie with eight minutes left in the game on an incredible individual effort by their striker, and Crested Butte failed to find the back of the net as the final minutes ticked off, leaving the Titans with a 2-1 loss.
Crested Butte looked to rebound from the loss on their road trip to Pagosa Springs the following day. Despite several defensive players lining up in new positions, the Titans defense proved solid, with junior Sky Egelhoff anchoring the back line.
Again Frame was on fire with a number of brilliant saves in net, but again the Titans offense struggled, stalling once they drew close to the Pirates’ net.
The efforts of both teams resulted in a 0-0 tie at the end of regulation and continued through the two overtime periods, leaving both squads with the bitter taste of a scoreless draw.
The Titans will now host three home games in a row as they face league leader Ridgway on Thursday, October 1 at 4 p.m., Bayfield on Friday, October 2 at 4 p.m. and then Pagosa Springs on Saturday, October 3 at 1 p.m.

Check Also

Kochevar’s squeaks out win over Pitas in softball

The future of town league is now [  by Than Acuff  ] Couple things first. …