LONGMONT — In a season opener, a team often expect some things to go well and some to go poorly.
The Skyline girls soccer team opened 2012 at home against Fort Morgan but it was hard to point to anything that didn’t go the Falcons’ way. The defending Tri-Valley league champions went on a collaborative scoring spree and didn’t allow the Mustangs even one shot in a 9-0 season-opening stomping.
Thursday’s outcome was no surprise as the Falcons thumped the Mustangs 7-0 in last season’s opener. But with the bar set at repeating as conference champs, just winning the game wasn’t enough for the Falcons.
“We got better as the game went on,” senior midfielder Tara Schulz said. “We kind of got selfish and just started scoring. But as the game went on, we started actually playing our game and possessing more and getting prepared for further games.”
The Falcons got an infusion of youth this offseason. On Thursday, five of their nine goals came off the feet of sophomores, including the first three.
In her first varsity game, sophomore Melissa Pond scored the first goal of the season in the fifth minute, assisted by fellow sophomore Jordan Barnes.
“I was just really happy and glad because I was really nervous to play varsity at first,” Pond said. “I was like, ‘Finally, I can prove myself.’ I feel like I played pretty good. harder teams and I’ll have to work a lot harder but I’m ready for it.”
Adjusting to the faster varsity pace, the Barnes took her turn scoring in the 13th minute off a deflected Schulz attempt. Four minutes later, the sophomore pair combined for another goal, this time with Pond setting up Barnes with a nice through pass.
Just before the half, Schulz fired another goal to give the Falcons a 4-0 halftime lead.
“We can’t take it for granted because we have to practice playing how we would against teams that will give us a challenge,” Schulz said.
The Falcons didn’t let up. Pond scored her second goal less than a minute into the second half and Schulz netted another two minutes later.
Sophomore Monica Overturf took the ball herself around the left side of the Mustangs defense in the 49th minute for the Falcons’ seventh goal. Junior Hannah Truesdale scored their eighth in the 62nd minute and junior Deandra Elcock scored their ninth in the 68th, both assisted by senior midfielder Nikki Mastriona.
Falcons goalkeeper Rebecca Kissinger touched the ball just once off the foot of an opposing player.
With their only non-conference games coming against Silver Creek, Niwot and Longmont, which are cross-town rivalries they want to win, Falcons head coach Kevin Puckett said the Falcons won’t have any unimportant games in 2012.
“I don’t care what conference you play in, I don’t care where you play, to us there’s no slouch game on the schedule,” Puckett said. “We have to come into every game knowing that if we’re gonna win the conference, we gotta win them all.”
The Falcons play Northridge, which finished 7-7 overall last season, on Monday.
Brad Cochi can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Skyline 9, Fort Morgan 0
At Skyline H.S.
Fort Morgan (0-1, 0-1) 0 0 — 0
Skyline (1-0, 1-0) 4 5 — 9
Goals (assists) — Skyline: Melissa Pond (Jordan Barnes), 5th minute; Barnes (Tara Schulz), 13th; Barnes (Pond), 17th; Schulz (Deandra Elcock), 37th; Pond (Hannah Truesdale), 41st; Schulz (Pond), 43rd; Monica Overturf (Nikki Mastriona), 62nd; Elcock (Mastriona), 68th.
Goalkeepers (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Fort Morgan: Cecilia Guerra (80-9-21). Skyline: Rebecca Kissinger (80-0-0).
Shots — Fort Morgan 0, Skyline 44.
Shots on goal — Fort Morgan 0, Skyline 30.
Corner kicks — Fort Morgan 1, Skyline 2.
Penalties — Fort Morgan 4, Skyline 5.