Steve Lewis/Durango Herald
Durango High School girls soccer fans are used to seeing a Milliet score the opening goal of the game.
The surprise, however, was that it wasn’t Brooke – it was Lauren.
Not to worry. Big sister got hers, too. So did three other Demons.
The freshman Milliet opened the scoring in the second minute, her older sister scored twice, and DHS also got goals from Raquel Delgado and Amanda Jones in a convincing 5-0, home-opening, season-opening and Southwestern League-opening win over Grand Junction Central on Friday at Riverview Sports Complex.
As expected, Brooke Milliet was overjoyed when Lauren Milliet’s low, bounding shot from beyond the penalty area found its way between Central goalkeeper Emily Dufford and the left post. What she enjoys most, however, simply is sharing the same pitch as her sibling, at least for one season.
“We just read each other so well, so I don’t even have to say anything, and she knows right where I’m running,” said Brooke Milliet, daughter of Charlie and Janis Milliet. “It comes from years and years of playing one-on-one in our garage, but we sort of know how each other work.”
Durango was the well-organized aggressor all evening, outshooting the Warriors 11-2 in shots on goal, unofficially. The Demons’ use of three forwards allowed them to push the pace offensively, and their ability to win balls through the midfield and on defense particularly pleased head coach Aaron Eldridge.
“I think they were ready, and they played well,” he said. “We’ve been working on a new formation this year, and it really allows us not only to get numbers into the attack but also to kind of help defend the middle of the field, so we stayed really well organized, I thought.”
Brooke Milliet, Durango’s leading scorer the last two seasons, dented the twine for the first time in the 20th minute. She took a long feed from Delgado, shook off a defender and chipped the ball over a charging Dufford and into the upper left-hand corner of the net to give the Demons a 2-0 lead.
Just before halftime, it was Jones’ turn to strike. The senior defender lined up a free kick from about 25 yards out and blasted it just under the crossbar to give DHS a 3-0 advantage just before halftime.
“I saw an open corner and was going for that ... but it kind of just went over her instead,” said Jones, daughter of Eric and Stephanie Jones. “I was hoping if she got it that my team would crash to get the goal.”
The elder Milliet struck again in the 40th minute, on a feed from Delgado, crossing over a Warriors defender and blasting a shot from the right side of the penalty area past a frozen Dufford.
Delgado got a goal of her own in the 57th minute, taking an Amanda McAliney pass and blasting it in from 12 yards out.
“It’s nice to get everybody involved, because it’s usually just forwards and midfield, but when you get the defense involved (in the scoring), it’s really nice,” Jones said.
Eldridge said the one down spot for him was a bit of a mental lapse in the final 10 minutes of the game, one that forced keeper Karlee Mulkey to make a tough save on a free kick. Overall, however, the head coach was pleased with the effort and said he’s looking forward to what he hopes is a similar showing today against Montrose.
“Luckily, I think we’re dynamic in our attacking players and our defensive players for that matter, so I feel like we kind of achieved our first goal of kind of building some confidence and knowing we can score and knowing we can defend,” Eldridge said.