“I think the girls know that after the break, games are going to get tougher”
By Than Acuff
The highs and lows of the Crested Butte Titans girls soccer schedule continue. Over the course of the past three years, the coaches and athletics director Jarrod Hinton have worked diligently to get a tougher schedule for the girls soccer team.
This year started off with a bang as the Titans had tough match-ups with several non-league opponents, gaining some insight into what they need to work on if they want to succeed in the post season.
Unfortunately, the Titans are beholden to their league match-ups as well, which meant a string of two soft games and a forfeit the past two weeks.
The string started with a 10-0 win over Ignacio back on April 1. The Titans’ next league opponent, Ridgway, forfeited, and the Titans finished it off with a 9-0 non-league win over the Alamosa Mean Moose on Tuesday, April 11. They are now 6-4 overall, ranked eighth in the state in 2A and remain at the top of the league standings with a record of 3-0.
Coach Heather Culley did expect a tougher match out of Alamosa having beat them last year just 3-0, and prepared accordingly by giving her players some goals prior to the match.
“We’ve been working on passing patterns in practice so that was the focus in the game,” says Culley. “Showing us that they know what we’ve been talking about.”
While Alamosa proved to be less of an opponent than expected, the Titans continued their focus on the task at hand to improve their overall game, no matter who they are playing.
“We’re trying to make a long run in the playoffs so we’re going to have to use our outside mids and outside backs a lot more,” explains Culley. “A lot of the teams we’ve played have a lot in the middle and we see success and move the ball better on the outside.”
Their effort paced the Titans to the win with India Nornes recording a hat trick, Leigh Harpel and Molly Miller scoring two goals each and Ellie O’Neal and Vivian White each scoring once. Goalie Mara Pennie finished with her third shutout of the season.
Now the team heads into a 10-day break from action with the school’s April Break this week. They return to action when they host Telluride on Wednesday, April 26 at 3 p.m. in Gunnison. The Titans edged out a 1-0 win over Telluride earlier this season. They hit the road the next day for a non-league match with Summit and return home to host Ridgway on Saturday, April 29 at 10:30 a.m., also in Gunnison.
“Hopefully we can get into the groove of things during practices Monday and Tuesday and be ready to go against Telluride on Wednesday,” says Culley. “I think the girls know that after the break, games are going to get tougher.”