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Girls soccer: Nyah Ringer’s four goals helps Centaurus stay perfect

Sophomore leaves in the 50th minute with an injury

LAFAYETTE — Centaurus' Nyah Ringer shoots Wednesday, April 13, 2022.
LAFAYETTE — Centaurus’ Nyah Ringer shoots Wednesday, April 13, 2022.

LAFAYETTE — Centaurus sophomore Nyah Ringer clanked a chance off the left post in the opening half Wednesday, then went pencil-shavings wide with another not long after.

As a cold, blustering wind sent bench players and fans under jacket hoods and blankets at Spangenberg Field, the Warriors’ fervent scorer was unbound — so much so that her misses ended up being easier to calculate than her makes.

Ringer recorded her second hat trick of the season in an 18-minute span in the first half and finished with a career-high four goals before leaving with an injury as Centaurus sailed past Greeley West 8-1 to remain perfect on the year.

The sophomore’s goals came in the 14th, 21st and 32nd minutes in the first half, the last of which, a nifty header inside the box. She added her last of the night in the 44th before leaving on a cart in the 50th.

“It’s definitely hard having an injury and in the middle of the high school season,” Ringer said of the bittersweet night. “But I’m just going to try my best to get better as soon as possible.”

Annabelle Stephan finished a hat trick of her own with 50 seconds remaining for the 4A No. 6 Warriors (7-0, 4-0 5A/4A Northern), who continued their best start to a season since at least before 2009. Page Sanchez held a shutout through her 50 minutes in net, then transitioned to a forward to score her third goal of the season.

Centaurus remains one of three unblemished teams in the classification (Durango and Thompson Valley). During its run, it has outscored teams 31-5.

“Centaurus girls’ soccer hasn’t really been like the, ‘Oh my God, they’re so good’,” Stephan said afterward. “So, trying to get a name for ourselves this season has been really exciting.”

In their latest, the weather was brutal — though it could have been worse. “The JV game had 19 mph winds,” Stephan pointed out. “We didn’t have that, thank God.”

Centaurus was sizzling all the same.

With Ringer’s hatty leading the charge, the Warriors scored four goals over 18 minutes in the opening half.

Ringer beat the defense on her first, swinging her leg across the body in hitting the far corner. The onslaught was on from there, and a little more than a minute later the sophomore forced a turnover off a wayward goal kick to help set up Stephan’s first.

Ringer finished the half with two more goals off helpers from Kate Flaherty and Karis Waymire, then scored another after the break to push the lead to 5-0 with 36:31 remaining.

For the season, Ringer has 13 goals in seven games, the most in the league. She has 20 in 17 career games.

“Even in her first year as a freshman, you could see the potential,” Centaurus coach Mario Bezzina said. “She understands the movements better and is more comfortable finishing. That’s been one of the factors that has fallen into place (for us).”

Centaurus is at Greeley Central Monday.

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