When Taylor Moore streaked down the right side, beat her defender, and scored to even Durango High School's girls
lacrosse game against Eagle Valley at 6-6, DHS coach Jenni Darlow was equal parts elated and worried, despite the clock
showing just 1 minute, 38 seconds remaining.
I looked at the clock and said, 'There's too much time left,'" she said.
She was right.
Despite being down a player because of a penalty, the Devils' Kayla Gagnon scored her second goal of the game with 23.7
seconds remaining, and Kelsi Schwan scored at the buzzer to give visiting Eagle Valley an 8-6 victory over Durango on
Saturday in both teams' final game of the year.
The Demons (4-6) finished the season losers of four consecutive games after a promising start, and perhaps no loss was
as gut-wrenching as the last.
It's disappointing because we lost our last four in a row to end up with a losing season," Darlow said. I definitely
have a little painful feeling in my heart right now, but there's positives. It wasn't for lack of effort that we
The scoring pace picked up in the second half, after a tight defensive first half ended with DHS in front 3-1. The
Demon defense, which had a solid first half, regressed early in the second.
Gagnon tallied for the first time Saturday by picking up a loose ball right in front of the Durango net and putting it
Gagnon assisted on Schwan's game-tying goal just more than a minute later. Schwan found herself all alone in the center
just 5 feet from DHS goalie Alyssa Spencer, and quickly fired Gagnon's pass past the defenseless netminder.
Schwan would pot her second on a free position shot with 16:21 remaining, giving Eagle Valley a 4-3 lead.
After a key save by Spencer, Mollie Bennett evened the game at four after taking a long pass and getting behind the
entire Devils' defense.
The two teams would swap goals until Gagnon rolled off her defender and fired what would prove to be the game-winner
with just seconds left.
Darlow lamented the missed opportunities created by several key drops and missed catches.
There were just too many moments in the game where we couldn't catch," she said. There were moments where it didn't
seem like our players wanted the ball. They watched too much."
Moore (2), Bennett, Flor Chacon, Siena Gumbiner and Kallie Strode scored for Durango.
Schwan's hat trick and Gagnon's pair of goals led the Devils (3-7), who also got scores from Amanda Morgan (2) and
Number 32 (Cori Cramer) on their team is fast," Darlow said of the Eagle Valley attack. She was flying down the
field, and we couldn't keep up with her. Also (Gagnon), we couldn't defend her. I don't know why we could in the first
half, but we couldn't (in the second half)."
The silver lining for Durango was the play of Spencer. The Demons' goalie made several key stops, most from point-blank
range, including a key save to keep the game at 4-3, and another big stop on Morgan with 2:25 remaining and the game
tied at five.
To me, it was mandatory (to make the saves)," Spencer said. I felt that I had to get in front of that ball."
Like any good guardian of the net, Spencer was disappointed about giving up the final two goals, but remained
optimistic, with her eye focused squarely on the future.
I just like to play," she said. I cannot wait for our freshmen that are good this year to improve on their stick
skills, and hopefully our sophomores will do that, too."
It's a future that should be bright for a squad that doubled its win total from its inaugural season in 2009. Everybody
on the roster is expected to return, and could get a boost in numbers with some improvement from select junior varsity
players. Durango had no seniors on the roster in 2010.
We will only get stronger. There will not be letdown," Darlow said of 2011.