Blazers split weekend games

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TORRINGTON – The Torrington Trailblazers boys soccer team defended its home field Friday in an 8-4 win over Douglas, before falling on the road Saturday against Lander, 3-2.

Tristen Kingsley got things started Friday with a goal off the assist from Nathan Stitt in the fifth minute. Ethan Creagar got into the action quickly, with a goal of his own in the sixth minute. In the 14th minute, the Stitt-to-Kingsley connection worked the other way, with Kingsley finding Stitt for a goal to put Torrington up 3-0.

Five minutes later, Kingsley had his second assist on the night with the feet to Josh Kingsley for another Blazer goal. Stitt was not done in the first half, flicking on a header off the cross from Devin Flores to put Torrington up 5-0 in the 21st minute. Tristen Kingsley scored again after snaking into the box and finding the back of the net. The Blazers took a 6-0 lead into the break.

Douglas came out firing on all cylinders in the second half. They scored in the 43rd minute and again in the 57th minute. Four minutes after their second goal, Douglas added another to put trim the lead to 6-3.

William Fluckiger quickly responded, scoring on a ricochet in the 62nd minute to push Torrington’s lead to 7-3. Stitt scored again to put the Blazers up 8-3. Douglas was not done for the game, scoring on a penalty kick in the 72nd minute, but they ran out of time, with Torrington sealing the 8-4 win.

“I thought we played really well,” coach Jeshua Arnusch said. “I thought we moved the ball well and did a solid job of coming out strong. It was also nice to get a lot of the young guys some time.”

When the dust settled, Stitt finished with a hat trick, while Tristen Kingsley notched two goals. Fluckiger, Creagar and Josh Kingsley all had a goal on the day. Tristen Kingsley, Stitt and Flores all had two assists, while Creagar and Braeden Claussen each had an assist.

Lander 3, Torrington 2

The Blazers went on the road Saturday to take on conference foe Lander. Stitt and Nate Gutierrez each had a goal, with Claussen recording an assist in the loss.

“We got beat because of our set pieces,” Arnusch said. “If we want to win a championship, we have to learn how to mark up defensively and challenge for the ball off of free kicks.”

The loss dropped the Blazers to 7-5 on the year, with a 1-1 record in the conference. They do hold the goal differential advantage over the Tigers. Torrington returns to its home field for Senior Night on Friday for action against Rawlins, set to kick off at 5 p.m. Torrington also plays Buffalo on the road Saturday at 2 p.m.

“At the end of the day, we ended up beating Lander on the goal difference (5-4),” Arnusch said. “Now we have to take care of business against Rawlins both times we play them and get the home and away wins.”

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