CHEYENNE – The Torrington High School boys’ soccer team wrapped up the season with a fourth place showing at the Class 3A State Soccer Tournament in Cheyenne over the weekend.
The Blazers defeated Cody in the opening round, as the only team from the East Conference to win on the first day, before falling to Powell and Lander Valley on Friday and Saturday, respectively to close out the season.
On Thursday, Torrington fell behind to Cody in the 10th minute, but the Blazers answered with five unanswered goals en route to a 5-1 victory.
The Broncs led 1-0 until the 34th minute when Deagan Keith tied the match at one. Two minutes later, Chase Miller gave the Blazers a 2-1 advantage just before halftime.
“We dominated that game, and Cody helped us quite a bit,” THS coach Gabe Bartlett said. “They imploded. They couldn’t get over that we scored that goal. Then they turned a wreck, and we put it on them. We played phenomenal that game.”
In the second half, Torrington found the back of the net three more times, including one more from Miller before Ty Prall added two of his own to close out the win.
In the semifinal round, the Blazers came out firing and grabbed an early 1-0 lead on a goal score by Prall.
“We came out guns a blazing,” Bartlett said.
Powell countered with three consecutive goals, including two in the second half to propel them into Saturday’s championship match, sending Torrington to the third-place match in a 3-1 loss.
“That’s a good team. They are a tough team to play with,” Bartlett said. “They’ll run at you and run at you. Their skill all around the field was phenomenal. We would have had to play a perfect game.”
Late in the first half, freshman midfielder Adam Bartlett went down and that’s when the momentum began to shift.
“It threw us off how we set up our team and how we go,” Gabe Bartlett said.
The loss dropped the Blazers to a third-place match against the Lander Valley Tigers on Saturday morning.
Lander scored the first four goals in the 4-1 loss, including three in the first 12 minutes.
“The way we played from the 10-minute mark on, we dominated the game,” Gabe Bartlett said. “We had our chances but couldn’t find anything.”
Torrington went with a different formation not knowing if Adam Bartlett would be able to play.
“We got him back in about the 10-minute mark, and it changed the dynamic of the team,” Gabe Bartlett said. “It gave us a little confidence boost, and it shut down what (Lander) was trying to do.”
The Blazers were able to slow down Lander for the rest of the game outside of a cheap goal early in the second half.
Torrington had several scoring opportunities over the final 60 minutes, but it wasn’t until Keith knocked through a penalty kick in the 73rd when the Blazers finally got on the scoreboard.
“It was a great play by Ty Prall to go get it and make something happen. Ty has been doing that for the past five games for us. We needed something good to happen. We threw the kitchen sink at them in the end,” Gabe Bartlett said. “I can’t talk enough about how much they battled. They could have packed it in at 3-0 and folded, but they kept battling and battling. I’m proud of them for that.”
The Blazers finished the season with an 11-4-2 record.
“These kids love to play soccer. It’s evident by them not folding and not pouting,” Bartlett said. “The future is bright. We lose Dewey Randall, Ty Prall and Landon Norris but the rest are coming back. We also have a great group of freshmen coming in.”