BY CHHUN SUN, The Gazette
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Aliyah Moya has one thing on her mind when she steps onto the field for The Vanguard School girls’ soccer team, and that’s to score goals.
“I can’t do this without my team,” she said. “My team looks and finds me, and somehow I’m always there at the right place, the right time.”
But her mindset isn’t just limited to individual achievements. The junior striker also want to help her teammates make history.
The Coursers have not made the state playoffs since the program’s inception in 2009. But that could change this year, especially with Moya around.
In wins over Colorado Springs School, Florence and Lamar, Moya tallied six goals and one hat trick — enough to land her this week’s The Gazette Preps Peak Performer. And she’s showing no signs of slowing down, evidenced by her season-high four goals in a 5-0 win over Pueblo Central on Monday.
“She always has the mindset to score,” Vanguard coach Rachel Francis said.
It’s something she’s been doing a lot since her freshman season, when she exploded for 34 goals. That year, things began to shift for the Coursers. That year, they finished with seven wins for just the second time in school history.
Then last year, the Coursers made history again.
They finished 8-6-1, the first time Vanguard wrapped up the season with a winning record. Moya finished with only 19 goals, relatively low compared to her first season with the program.
But it appears as if she’s back to scoring again at a rapid pace.
Moya has 22 goals after the Coursers beat Pueblo Central on Monday to improve to 9-3 overall. Vanguard boasts a six-game winning streak with three games left.
The Coursers’ RPI rating puts them 20th in the Class 3A, and 32 teams qualify for next month’s state tournament. The players and coaches seem confident that they can accomplishment what no other Vanguard team before has done.
“We want to make school history,” Moya said. “We want to make it to the playoffs. And every time we step on the field, we want to make it and we put everything out there.”
“If we work hard,” she added, “we can achieve anything.”
Just The Facts
Aliyah Moya, The Vanguard School
Sport: Girls’ soccer
Highlights: The junior had six goals in three wins last week that included a hat trick performance. She leads the team with 22 goals, thanks in part to scoring a season-high four goals in a 5-0 nonconference win over Pueblo Central on Monday.
Favorite athlete: Cody Bellinger
Favorite pumpup song: Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road”
Favorite movie: “The Secret Life of Pets”
Favorite school subject: English
Other Top Performers
Edwin Romo, St. Mary’s
The senior threw a five-inning no-hitter against Evangelical Christian Academy, finishing with six strikeouts to extend the Pirates’ winning streak to eight games. An error was committed, preventing Romo from a perfect game. He is 5-1 entering this week. At the plate, he was 2-for-3 with an RBI against ECA.
Charlotte Cliatt, Palmer
The senior fired a 1-over-par 75 — four strokes better than her personal best — to win the individual title at the Terrors’ own invitational last week. Her performance helped Palmer secured a second-place finish behind Coronado, which won the team title by nine strokes
Nicole Beaulieu, Cheyenne Mountain
The senior had a standout week in wins over Rampart and Palmer, finishing with a combined 10 goals and five assists to help the Indians to a 4-1 record in league play. Beaulieu leads Cheyenne Mountain with 40 goals entering this week.
Brittney White, Pine Creek
The senior came up big for the Eagles in a 13-12 rivalry win over Air Academy, finishing with five goals and four assists. In the Eagles’ two other wins last week over Liberty and Palmer, White had a combined seven goals and three assists. The Eagles finished the week with a 12-1 overall record.
BOYS’ SWIMMING AND DIVING
Seth Shyrock and Nathan Aumiller, Rampart
The duo not only captured respective individual events but also set event records en route to the Rams’ team win at the Fountain-Fort Carson Invitational last Saturday. Shyrock, a freshman, won the 100-yard backstroke in 56.58 seconds, besting the previous mark by nearly two seconds. Meanwhile, junior Aumiller finished the 200 freestyle in 1:52.51, topping the previous mark of 1:53.16 set last year.
Mariah Boudrieau, Widefield
The senior beat Sierra last week to keep her No. 3 singles winning streak alive at six straight matches after she opened up the season with a loss. Her record is 6-1, and Boudrieau has helped the Gladiators to a 9-0 overall and 5-0 mark in Class 4A Region 7 action.