Mountain Vista moves to 16-1 on ice

Tom Munds
Mountain Vista's Jacob Morgan (41) tries to get control of the puck as Heritage goalie Andrew Nash smothers it during a Feb. 7 contest. Nash may have won this battle but the 16-1 Golden Eagles won the game, 7-1.
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The Mountain Vista hockey team displayed spectacular skills at both ends of the rink this past weekend as the Golden Eagles topped Heritage, 7-1, and Chatfield, 15-0, for their 15 and 16 wins of the season.

“We feel we are peaking at the right time with the playoffs coming up soon,” said coach Lev Cohen, prior to the 15-0 win. “Our team is strong at both ends of the ice. So far this season, the offense is averaging about nine goals a game and the defense has made it tough for the opponent to score. We also have good depth and, when everyone is healthy, we have four strong lines to put on the ice.”

The lone blemish on this season's record came Jan. 9 when the Golden Eagles (16-1) lost 4-3 in overtime to Ralston Valley (16-0). Mountain Vista — a composite team that features players from six area schools — has won 10 straight since.

The Golden Eagles played Cheyenne Mountain (8-8) Feb. 12 and will close out the regular season on the road Feb. 14 against Lewis Palmer (16-1) in a battle of two teams tied for the second-best records in the state.

On the ice Feb. 7, Mountain Vista got two quick first period goals by Cordt Fenstermaker and a short-handed goal before Heritage scored on a power play to make the score 3-1 at the end of the first period.

The Golden Eagles pressed the attack continually, pushing the puck into the Heritage zone and battling for shots on net. Mountain Vista added three goals in the second period and one in the final period to post the 7-1 win.

Joining Fenstermaker in the scoring column were Brandon Tangney, Tanner Gillis, Levi Drake, Austin Ansay and Kadin Steward, all adding one goal apiece. A dozen players were credited with assists in the game.

In the 15-0 win over Chatfield, 10 players scored with Ansay leading with way with a three-goal hat trick. There were 26 assists with William Fugit and Cade Boering each credited with four.

“This is our third year of hockey and our goal has been to improve each season,” Cohen said. “It has been a building process with more wins each season.

“Molding this team is not as difficult as it sounds with students from different schools because so many of these guys play club hockey together. We have talent so it is just a matter of finding the right combination of players for each of the lines.”

After the Heritage game, Fenstermaker said he was seeing the ice well as he was able to put the puck in the back of the net twice to put his team ahead quickly.

“After my two goals, I focused more on moving the puck and setting up teammates for good shots,” he said.

Winning without their star

Mountain Vista leading scorer Ryan Daugherty (22 goals, 19 assists) was wearing a suit and tie the night of the Heritage game as he continues to recover from a concussion.

The junior forward said after graduation he would like to play junior hockey out east and go to college after that.

“I started skating when I was 2 and started playing hockey a year or so later,” he said. “The fact my older brother played hockey, he was my inspiration to play the game.

“I am having a good year and that is because of the good communications and great chemistry with my teammates on our line. We work well together as we all do our separate parts so the attacks come together really well.”

He said he feels his biggest asset as a hockey player is his ability to know where everyone is on the ice and be able to time things well to get off good shots.

“As far as shots, I look for what is open,” he said. “Most often, it is the quick shot at the net so, that if there is a rebound, one of my teammates can get it and keep the attack going.”