The Middle Park Panthers season opener was full of highlights and struggles as the team lost 27-23 in a game they should have one. Leading the majority of the game the Panthers let the game slip in the fourth quarter as Battle Mountain made a come back drive for the win.

The Panthers will go up against Estes Park Friday, Sep 13 at 7:00 PM in Estes for a non-conference matchup.

~ Photos and football brief by Jen Emery


Senior Akram Hanna dribbles past a defender to make a shot of goal during scrimmage workout last week. Photo by Jen Emery

The MPHS boy’s soccer team started their season on the right foot, defeating Lake County 5-1.

Senior Jaime Rios got the Panthers on the scoreboard within the first 25 seconds of the first half, when he dribbled through the Lake County defense to slip a shot into the corner. 15 minutes later MP was awarded a free kick just outside the penalty box. Senior Akram Hanna delivered, a perfect ball into the box for senior Chris Orear, who headed the ball into the back of the net.  Middle Park’s 3rd goal came minutes later when sophomore Cade Jones delivered a perfect corner kick inside the six-yard box for junior Gustavo Galviz.  

Lake County scored late in the to make the score 3-1. 

Lake County, energized by their late fist half goal, created some scoring opportunities early in the 2nd half. Fortunately, MP was able to weather the storm, behind several saves by junior goalkeeper Ethan Ruttenberg.  Ruttenberg had 9 saves on the day. 

Eventually, MP settled in and began to dominate. Senior defender Vinny Troccoli made a run down Lake County’s left flank, crossed a difficult pass into Lake’s penalty box, which went into the goal off a deflection from a Lake County defender. 

Middle Park’s final goal came when Rios dopped a pass back to Orear, who drove the shot low into the goal for his 2nd of the day. 

MPHS #20, Akram Hanna moving the ball down the sidelines. Photo by Jen Emery

“It was a great start to the season,” said coach Dane Ruttenberg. “We’ll enjoy this win for a couple days, then it’s back to work.” In addition to those who scored and assisted, Ruttenberg wanted to acknowledge the defensive efforts of seniors Jack Orear and sophomore Seth Holestine. 

The Panthers next two home games will be Wednesday, September 11 at 4:00PM and Saturday, September 14 at 4:00PM. 

~ Submitted by Coach Dane Ruttenberg