Grand Junction recovers after slow start to beat Central in soccer

Grand Junction High School was a little slow to start on Tuesday but once they got going against Central, the Tigers couldn’t be stopped in a 5-0 win.

After a first half that saw only one goal, on a shot by forward Brendan Ryan, the Tigers put four second-half goals past Central goalie Roberto Navarrete.

“We had a one-goal lead, but we wanted more,” Grand Junction forward Tim Hofer said.

Hofer was responsible for two of the goals in the second half, and you could even make a case that he helped with a third.

With 17:44 left in the second half, Grand Junction had the ball inside the penalty area. Hofer fell to the turf with a cramp in his calf and play had to be stopped so he could be taken out of the game.

The Tigers got the ball back after the stoppage and Brendan Ryan was able to put the ball in for the final goal of the game.

Sean Berkson also scored for the Tigers and goalie Caleb Ealey recorded four saves on Central’s seven shots.

Despite the loss, the Warriors showed improvement, coach Doug Beach said.

“(The players) are starting to realize I actually know what I’m talking about,” he said.

Beach credited the first-half success to simple work ethic.

“The kids on the team are working hard on doing the things that we do in practice in the game,” he said.

“You could tell that Doug Beach did a good job getting them reorganized,” Grand Junction coach Stephen Latta said.

“They’re playing a lot more aggressive and organized soccer. I thought they played really well in the first half and I warned my boys of that, to not get complacent, because Central is organized now.”

Navarrete started in goal for the Warriors, blocking four shots and allowing all five goals before being replaced by Conor Beach for the last 10 minutes.

Montrose 6, Palisade 0: The Bulldogs spotted the Indians three goals in the first half as Montrose took the nonleague victory at the Peach Bowl.

Hector Almanza scored two goals and had an assist for Montrose; Josue Munoz added a pair of goals.

The Montrose defense allowed only one shot on goal. Rosalie Ornelas had 12 saves in goal for Palisade (1-9-1).


Central (11-1, 6-0 SWL) remained atop the Southwestern League standings with a thrilling 17-25, 20-25, 25-20, 25-20, 23-21 victory at Montrose.

Amy Kame had 28 kills to lead the Central offense. Ashley Wells had 17 kills and three blocks.

Fruita Monument avenged an earlier loss with a 25-21, 26-28,  25-20, 19-25, 15-7 victory over Grand Junction. Both Southwestern League matches between the teams have gone five games.

Lauren Gadeken’s six blocks led the Grand Junction defensive effort.

Eagle Valley handed Palisade its second consecutive loss,  25-21, 25-9, 23-25, 25-15 in Gypsum.

Morgan Reynolds’ three blocks and nine digs paced Palisade (8-4, 5-2 WSL).


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