Aspen High School Varsity
The Skiers were at home for a pair of CHSAA divisional games Friday and Saturday night, both broadcast live on Grassroots TV. On Friday night the Skiers skated past the Pine Creek Eagles 6-3. Henry Morrison scored early, tipping the puck off a shot from Jackson Holmbeck. After Pine Creek tied the game 90 seconds later, the Skiers scored four unanswered goals by Jordan Hornburg, Dominic Lanese, Liam Rigney, and Robbie Fitzgerald to take a commanding 5-1 lead midway through the second period. Pine Creek responded with an even strength goal late in the second and a power play goal early in the third, making it a two goal game. Late in the contest, Xander Ramsey sealed the 6-3 win for the Skiers scoring a beautiful goal off an offensive zone faceoff. In game two Aspen squared off against #4 ranked Resurrection Christian, a team that the Skiers had never beat before. Fitzgerald opened the scoring midway through the second period off a nice feed from Lanese, however Resurrection responded less than a minute later to tie the game. Early in the third period, Hornburg netted the eventual game winner on the power play with strong low shot from the point. The Skiers finished the game with a solid defensive effort and finely tuned penalty kill along with goaltender Gage Redman’s best high school performance to date (44 total saves). With one second left on the clock, Max Ufkes netted an empty net goal, and the Skiers celebrated an impressive and important win. Aspen returns to action next Friday night for senior night against Denver East at Lewis Arena. Once again, the game will be broadcast live on Grassroots TV.
Aspen played four games over the weekend, starting with an away matchup Friday night against Glenwood Springs. After giving up the first goal 14 seconds into the game and the second just over 2 minutes later, the Leafs found the back of the net with less than a minute left in the period. After a scoreless second period, Glenwood scored two more goals less than 30 seconds apart early in the final stanza. The Grizzlies sealed the 5-1 win with a late game tally. The following morning, the Leafs hosted Grand Junction for game one of a three-game series. Aspen scored early in the game, and it looked as if the team would dominate the contest. Penalties in the first period however allowed the momentum to swing in the Coyotes favor, and they cashed in on three unanswered goals (two on the power-play) to take a 3-1 lead. The Leafs made it 3-2 late in the second period but Grand Junction quickly responded 20 seconds later for a 4-2 lead. In the third period, Aspen scored a minute after the opening faceoff, however, once again they shot themselves in the foot taking 5 penalties in the final stanza. Skating over two-thirds of the period on the penalty kill essentially handed the Coyotes the win. In game two Aspen dominated in puck possession and shots, but a hot Grand Junction goalie shut the Leafs out. The Coyotes scored 4:58 into the third period, handing Aspen a tough 1-0 loss. In game three, Aspen scored two goals in the first period. Once again the team got into penalty trouble, skating 16 minutes shorthanded in the final two periods. Fortunately Leafs defense prevailed with a strong performance killing penalties for a 2-1 victory.
The Leafs took to the road this weekend for three-game series against the Summit Lightning in Breckenridge. In game one, Aspen dominated with an impressive 9-1 victory. In the game, six different players scored. Aspen notched their second victory a couple hours later with with a 4-3 victory. In their final game on Sunday, the Leafs put together a complete team win with eight different players finding the back of the net after a dominating third period performance. Trailing 3-2 midway through the second period, Aspen took over with six unanswered goals to secure an impressive 8-3 win. With the three-game sweep, Aspen improved to 7-6-2, just 2 points away from third place Vail. The team travels to Eagle next weekend for three games against the Mountaineers concluding the regular season with either a third or fourth place finish to heading into the CDYHL playoffs (set for March 2-4 in Aspen).
Aspen was at home over the weekend for a pair of Saturday games against the West Elk Wolverines. After a scoreless first period, the Leafs gave up two second period goals lighting the lamp six minutes into the final stanza. Aspen made a valiant attempt to tie the game, but fell short before the final buzzer. Later in the day Aspen started fast with a goal just 13 seconds into the contest. The Leafs made it 2-0 one minute later to excite the home crowd at the Ice Garden. After giving up the next three goals, Aspen tied the game at the 5:49 mark of the third period. Unfortunately for the Leafs, the Wolverines responded less then a minute later for the eventual game winner. Aspen concludes the regular season at home this Saturday with a pair of games against undefeated Durango. After the President’s Day tournament, their next round of games will be at home in the CDYHL playoffs March 2-4.
The Aspen House team hosted Glenwood Springs Saturday night at Lewis Arena against Glenwood Springs. In a high soring affair for the Leafs, the team defeated the Grizzlies 13-2.