Scouting state playoffs: 13 area teams begin journey to state soccer titles

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CLASS 5A

No. 18 Rampart

Game data: No. 18 Rampart (13-2) vs. No. 15 Fossil Ridge (8-4-2) … Tuesday, May 8, at Fossil Ridge, time TBA.

Scouting report: Rampart enters the 2018 5A state tournament riding a 10-game winning streak and a historic regular season, winning the outright 5A CSML title for the first time in three decades.

Rampart’s even offense boasts 11 scorers who have netted three or more goals this year - and eight who have 10 or more points. Led by a pair of sophomores, Jordan Garrett (12 G, 10 A) and Ashleigh Decker (10 G, 6A), the Rampart offense averages 4.8 goals per game. Its goalie tandem of Katlyn Rosenbaum and Samantha Sallie helped the team to its lengthy winning streak, posting a combined nine shutouts in their last 10 wins. The Rams have not allowed a goal since April 4.

The Rams, ranked No. 15 in the most recent MaxPreps ranking, will face Fossil Ridge, ranked 16 on MaxPreps, but due to its 8.7 strength of schedule rating and 0.567 RPI, the Sabercats jumped Rampart in the 5A seeding. Rampart had a comparatively weak schedule (rated 0.4 on MaxPreps) and earned a .563 RPI to fall to the No. 18 seed.

Fossil Ridge will need to start Tuesday’s first-round matchup with fire, as the Sabercats enter the postseason on a three-game losing skid. Fossil Ridge averages 2.4 goals per game and is led by Ashley Soulier who has five goals through 13 games. Kenady Adams also has five goals for the Sabercats but has not appeared in a game since March 27.

Fossil Ridge has deep goalie roster with nine different keepers appearing in goal this season. Vicky Graham has six wins and three shutouts.

No. 32 Pine Creek

Game data: No. 32 Pine Creek (7-7-1) vs. No. 1 Grandview (12-0-3) … Tuesday, May 8, at Grandview, time TBA.

Scouting report: The Eagles will have an uphill battle to start the 5A state tournament as Pine Creek will face No. 1 Grandview, who has yet to be beaten this season.

Grandview’s three ties this season came in back-to-back scoreless games in early April, and a 1-1 tie just last week.

Kendra Gipson and Natalie Beckman each have 10 goals on the season to lead the Wolves, who average 3.5 goals per game. Grandview has posted 10 shutouts thanks to its tandem in goal. Madison Livingston was responsible for six shutouts, while Reagan McComb had four. The pair’s combined goals-against average is 0.336.

Pine Creek freshman Lucy Hart will need to continue her stellar varsity debut into the postseason if the Eagles hope to make it to the second round. Hart leads the team with 10 goals and five assists, followed by Myah Isais who has netted nine goals and had four assists. Torrie Brodish has six goals and six assists through six appearances. Freshman Lauren Lacy has posted six shutouts for the Eagles.

Heading into the playoffs Pine Creek has lost three of its last five, including a tough 1-0 defeat by No. 27 Chatfield in its regular-season finale.

PREP SOCCER
The Rampart Rams defeated the Doherty Spartans 4-0 in girls' soccer on Tuesday, April 24, 2018 at District 20 Stadium. Photo by Isaiah J. Downing 

CLASS 4A

No. 15 Cheyenne Mountain, No. 18 The Classical Academy

Game data: No. 18 TCA (11-2-2) vs. No. 15 Cheyenne Mountain (9-4-2) … Wednesday, May 9 at 5 p.m., at Cheyenne Mountain.

Scouting report: In the area’s only all-Pikes Peak region first-round matchup we will see two teams with a history of success in the postseason go head-to-head. In the team’s first meeting this year, Cheyenne Mountain claimed a 3-1 victory.

Cheyenne Mountain, who suffered a tough second-round exit in last year’s playoffs in a double-overtime loss, enters this year’s tournament on a six-game unbeaten streak. The Indians ended the regular season with a 1-1 tie against No. 17 Sand Creek.

TCA on the other hand, tuned up for the postseason with challenging 2-1 loss to No. 2 Valor Christian, breaking a nine-game winning streak. Prior to Valor’s victory, TCA posted five 10-0 victories in its last nine games, had not allowed a goal since April 3 - when the Titans played Cheyenne Mountain.

Cheyenne Mountain will need to stop the Titans productive offense, which averages 5.7 goals per game. Trinity Harvey leads TCA with 17 goals and six assists, followed by freshman Talia Schmidt (12 G, 1 A) and Alison Smith (10 G, 11 A).

The Indians boast a more defensive game, scoring just 2.3 goals per game, on average, led by Sophie Hollard and Marissa Dowlin who have seven goals each. Carly Fetters and Lisa Long have scored six goals each for CM.

Sophomore Bella Zantoelli has two shutouts in goal for Cheyenne Mountain, and a 1.342 GAA.

According to the 4A MaxPreps rankings, TCA falls just ahead of Cheyenne Mountain at No. 15, even though the Indians boast a much higher strength of schedule rating (6.6, compared to TCA’s -1.5). Cheyenne Mountain ranked No. 15 in the final RPI with 0.588, while TCA fell to 18 with a 0.579 RPI.

No. 17 Sand Creek

Game data: No. 17 Sand Creek (11-3-1) vs. No. 16 Battle Mountain (10-4-1) … Wednesday, May 9, at Battle Mountain, time TBA.

Scouting report: Sand Creek went on a 5-0 streak to start the season, letting us know the Scorpions had the stuff to be a contender in the postseason - despite not making the playoffs since 2014.

Sand Creek ended the regular season in similar fashion, going 6-1-1 in the final stretch, led by freshman Sydney Lasater, who is ranked fourth in the state in points with 77, and fifth in goals with 32. With five hat tricks and eight multi-goal games, Lasater is Sand Creek’s not-so-secret weapon, and will a force to be reckoned with come the postseason.

However, if teams are able to stop Lasater, Sand Creek has a number of other scorers. Jaden Davis has 15 goals and 14 assists, while Zoey Shank and Amanda Garrett have 10 goals and six assists each.

Sand Creek is one of the highest-scoring team from the Pikes Peak region, averaging 6.1 goals per game, while goalies Amanda Garrett and Lexi Montero help the Scorpions’ dominant performances with a combined 0.471 GAA. Montero, a freshman, has seven shutouts in goal and is 11-1.

As for Battle Mountain, the Huskies closed on the regular season with a streak of their own, going 9-1 in the last leg of the season.

Audrey Teague is Battle Mountain’s leading scorer with 16 goals and eight assists through 15 games.

In their last postseason appearance four years ago, the Scorpions made a run to the state semifinals before falling 5-0 to Broomfield. This the just second time since 2008 that Sand Creek has won more than nine games.

No. 20 Palmer Ridge

Game data: No. 20 Palmer Ridge (9-3-3) vs. No. 13 Littleton (8-5-2) … Wednesday, May 9, at Littleton, time TBA.

Scouting report: An impressive 7-1-2 run closed out Palmer Ridge’s best year since 2014 as the Bears earned a top-20 seed.

Palmer Ridge enters the postseason after a solid defensive showing in its final seven games of the regular season. The Bears posted five shutouts and have allowed just four goals since April 12, outscoring opponents 23-4 along the way.

Sarah Miller and Emily Nguyen lead Palmer Ridge with 10 goals each, followed closely by Jordan Taft with eight goals and five assists.

Palmer Ridge averages 3.1 goals per game, while Tara Johnston and Kayla Glaser have a combined 0.941 goals against average through 15 games. Glaser has seven shutouts under her belt, while Johnston has two.

Littleton ended a two-game skid with a 1-0 win over No.9 Niwot to end the regular season. The Lions are a low-scoring squad, averaging just 1.9 goals per game, led by senior Sarah Gray who has 10 goals and three assists.

Although the two have not gone head-to-head this year, both teams settled for a tie against No. 2 Valor Christian, but Palmer Ridge tipped the scales in other common opponents with a 0-0 tie against Air Academy, while Littleton lost 3-1 to the No. 25 Kadets. Palmer Ridge also defeated No. 9 Niwot 4-1 in early April.

Littleton’s 10.6 strength of schedule rating and .593 RPI pushed the Lions up to No. 13, while Palmer Ridge settled for No. 20 with a 3.9 strength of schedule and .575 RPI.

No. 24 Lewis-Palmer

Game data: No. 24 Lewis-Palmer (8-5-2) vs. No. 9 Niwot (10-4-1) … Wednesday, May 9, 4 p.m. at Niwot.

Scouting report: In the last three games of the regular season Lewis-Palmer got its offense rolling, outscoring opponents 17-1 to end the year. Traditionally the Rangers are not a high-scoring team, averaging just 1.4 goals per game, but a 10-0 and 7-0 win in the final stretch of the regular season will likely give the Rangers the push they need against Niwot in round one.

Although season stats are not complete for Lewis-Palmer on MaxPreps, senior Rilee Britton led Lewis-Palmer with four goals and two assist in three games listed, including a hat trick against Vista Ridge.

Ellie Crisler and Ann Devine each scored twice in the Rangers 10-0 victory over the Wolves - LP’s biggest offensive game of the year.

Before falling to Littleton in the final game of the regular season Niwot had five straight shutouts, including back-to-back 10-0 wins.

The Cougars average 2.9 goals per game and allow 1.274. Anna McCarthy leads Niwot with 12 goals and six assists - double the goal total for the next leading scorer - Elise Crall who has six goals and four assists. Alexandra Colvin has been solid for the Cougars in net. Each of her seven wins have been by shutout.

No. 25 Air Academy

Game data: No. 25 Air Academy (7-6-1) vs. No. 8 Standley Lake (10-4-1) … Wednesday, May 9 at Standley Lake, time TBA.

Scouting report: Six of Air Academy’s seven wins this regular season were shutouts, thanks to another stand out year for senior Katlyn Blacksten in goal. With a 1.176 goals-against average, she posted five shutouts. Last year in her varsity debut, Blacksten had seven shutouts.

Emma Franzen and Sophia Dawrant also had shutouts this season. Franzen appeared in one game, while Dawrant was in net four times.

Air Academy’s consistency in goal helped the Kadets to their third-straight playoff appearance as the team has a relatively low-scoring offense, averaging 2.3 goals per game.  

Katherine Tansill and Hanna Chaja led the Kadets with six goals and one assist each. Zoe Sims and Baylee Barnes each have four goals and four assists.

Thankfully for Air Academy, their first-round matchup doesn’t have a high-scoring offense either, as No. 8 Standley Lake averages 2.1 goals per game, led by freshman Abby Hoople with seven goals. Haley Klasner leads the Gators in points with five goals and six assists.

The biggest problem Air Academy will face is in front of Standley Lake’s goal, home to senior Emma Smith, who has allowed just 11 goals through 15 appearances, and earned five shutouts.

PREP SOCCER
The TCA Titans hosted the Valor Christian Eagles in girls' soccer on Friday, May 4, 2018 at The Classical Academy. Photo by Isaiah J. Downing 

CLASS 3A

No. 6 Manitou Springs

Game data: No. 6 Manitou Springs earned a first-round bye thanks to its 13-2 regular season and perfect slate in Class 3A Region 2. The Mustangs will host the winner of No. 11 St. Mary’s vs. No. 22 Bayfield in the second round on May 12.

No. 9 Colorado Springs Christian

Game data: No. 24 Eagle Ridge Academy (8-6) vs. No. 9 Colorado Springs Christian (12-2) … Wednesday, May 9, at Colorado Springs Christian, time TBA.

Scouting report: After a perfect 12-0 start to the regular season, Colorado Springs Christian got its first taste of defeat in the final two games of the year.

Averaging 4.8 goals per game the Lions breezed through its first 12 wins, outscoring opponents 57-6 along the way.

Kait Halverson was responsible for 32 of those 57 goals in the first 12 games, and is ranked among the top three scorers in all of Colorado. While Halverson took care of the offensive end, sophomore Megan Boucher protected the net, posting seven shutouts and allowing six goals through 12 games for a 0.500 goals against average.

The next leading scorer for the Lions is Grace Rummel who has six goals and an assist.

The Warriors are led by high-powered sophomore Emily Hughes who has 20 goals and seven assists for Eagle Ridge, who boasts a young core. Hughes is one of three sophomores that tops the leaderboard. Aryanna Hiatt and Olivia Mendoza represent the class of 2020 with eight and four goals for the Warriors, respectively.

Eagle Ridge has two goalies who have appeared in 12 games each, Reina Bautista and Lani Mathews. Elvira Lopez - also a sophomore - has appeared in eight games and has two shutouts.

No. 11 St. Mary’s

Game data: No. 22 Bayfield (8-6-1) vs. No. 11 St. Mary’s (11-3-1) … Wednesday, May 9, at St. Mary’s, time TBA.

Scouting report: The last time these two 3A squads went head-to-head, St. Mary’s claimed a decisive 5-0 win in mid March. Afterwards the Pirates rebounded from a quick two-game skid and have since kept going on their impressive crusade with nine shutouts and six games in which they have scored 10 goals or more.

Averaging 5.5 goals per game St. Mary’s ranked No. 4 among 3A in goals led by four powerful scorers who reached 10 or more goals in the regular season. Mary Brummel leads the Pirates with 17 goals and four assists, followed by Cassidy Sorensen (15 G, 7 A), Marisa Shigio (12 G, 6 A) and Isabella Thomas (10 G, 9 A).

In goal Becca Dunbaugh earned eight shutouts and a 0.707 goals-against average through 13 games.
Bayfield is riding a five-game unbeaten streak, despite settling for a tie against Crested Butte in the final game of the regular season. And although the Wolverines don’t have the depth and fire power St. Mary’s has, their not-so-secret weapon Savannah Kaufmann has been a terror for teams all season. She has 24 goals and nine assists for Bayfield, while the next leading scorers, Halle Loveday and Misty Helton have seven goals each.

In order to get past the Pirates, Bayfield will need a solid showing in goal from sophomore Lana McKee, who averages 3.13 goals against in 13 appearances.

Manitou Springs forward Brooklyn Mack stabs for the ball in a fight with a Colorado Springs School defender at CSS, on Thursday, April 19, 2018. Manitou Springs defeated Colorado Springs School 8-0. (Nadav Soroker, The Gazette)
Manitou Springs forward Brooklyn Mack stabs for the ball in a fight with a Colorado Springs School defender at CSS, on Thursday, April 19, 2018. Manitou Springs defeated Colorado Springs School 8-0. (Nadav Soroker, The Gazette) 

CLASS 2A

No. 3 Fountain Valley

Game data: No. 3 Fountain Valley earned a first-round bye thanks to its 12-3 regular season and 2A Region 1 title. The Danes have won nine of their last 10 games, and their only losses of the season have come from the hands of three squads ranked in the top-11 of Class 3A (Manitou Springs, CSCS and St. Mary’s).

Fountain Valley will play the winner of No. 6 Del Norte vs. No. 11 Colorado Springs School at home on May 11.

No. 11 Colorado Springs School

Game data: No. 11 Colorado Springs School (4-9-1) vs. No. 6 Del Norte (11-4) … Tuesday, May 8, 5 p.m. at Del Norte.

Scouting report: The Colorado Springs School Kodiaks have been streaky through the regular season, highlighted by a three-game winning streak in the middle of the season in which CSS outscored opponents 24-1. But in order to get by No. 6 Del Norte, the Kodiaks must turn their two-game losing skid around and find some offense.

CSS has scored just nine goals in the final eight games of the season and was shut out three times. The Kodiaks average 2.8 goals per game, led by Katherine Hatch and Ali Graham. Hatch has 15 goals and four assists, followed by Graham with 10 goals and eight assists.

Del Norte on the other hand averages 4.1 goals per game thanks to a pair of underclassmen who have racked up a combined 110 points through the regular season.

Sophomore Kendra Parra leads the team with 24 goals and five assists, while freshman Chloe McComas has 22 goals and 13 assists.

The Tigers enter the postseason on a six-game winning streak.