Rivalry games are a big deal but the Castle View-Douglas County lacrosse game April 23 had additional importance for the Sabercats.
Castle View put its slim state playoff hopes on the line and came away with a 14-5 Douglas County League victory over the rival Huskies in a game played in a driving rainstorm at Douglas County Stadium.
When the final horn sounded, the Sabercats hurried out of the rain and into the dressing room carrying the traveling trophy that from this point forward will annually go to the winner of the game between the two Castle Rock schools.
Winning the trophy in its first year of existence was obviously important, but the Sabercats need wins to make a late season push for a berth in the state playoffs.
“Every game from here on out is huge,” said Castle View coach Jose Trujillo. “We lose any more and we’re probably out of the playoffs. Starting with Douglas County we had to win. It was a must win situation, we played hard, we played well and we came out on top.”
Castle View broke a 2-2 tie late in the first quarter with five unanswered goals that straddled the first and second frames.
Max Tuttle, a junior midfielder, scored three of those goals while Kai Trujillo and Tanner Wilkerson had the other tallies during the decisive spurt.
“That was ball control,” said Trujillo when quizzed about the goals that pushed the Sabercats into a five-point advantage. “They battled for a while then we got ahead of them. Considering the conditions we played pretty well. We came together defensively and offensively.”
Douglas County coach Scott Evans claims turnovers and poor face-off control were costly for the Huskies.
“We were in the game early but our play deteriorated with the weather,” he said. “Castle View was able to go on an early five-goal run because of turnovers and their control of the face-off X. Once they got the ball, they did a nice job of finishing their possessions.
“As a rebuilding program, you have to play a nearly perfect game to stay with a good team like Castle View, and we just made too many mistakes that Castle View turned into points.”
Tuttle wound up with five goals and an assist for Castle View.
“Max Tuttle is the real deal,” said Trujillo. “He’s a bona fide star. As he goes, we go.”
Josh Miller had two goals to pace the Huskies.
Not everything was rosy for the Sabercats, however, as Castle View defenders Austin Cyrus and Kobey Bentien both had to be helped off the field in the second half with apparent knee injuries.
“With wet weather, they just planted and their knees twisted,” explained Trujillo. “Hopefully they are just minor injuries and we can get them back.”
Castle View held off ThunderRidge, 11-10, on April 25 to improve to 6-3 in the Douglas County League and 7-6 overall. The Sabercats were slated to play Pine Creek April 30 and will conclude the regular season May 1 at Heritage.
Douglas County (4-8, 1-7 league) dropped an 11-4 decision to Rock Canyon April 24 as Cody Bolen accounted for two Huskies goals. The Huskies were scheduled to play ThunderRidge April 28 before a May 1 game at Littleton and a season finale May 2 at Evergreen.