Five goals from senior Dylan Webster powered the Glenwood Springs High School boys hockey team past Columbine, 7-1, in the first round of the state playoffs Wednesday afternoon.
Playing on neutral ice at the Eagle Pool & Ice Rink just up Interstate 70 from home, the Demons (12-5-3), seeded 15th in the 24-team tournament, jumped out to a 3-1 lead after the first period of play. The No. 18 Rebels (8-11-1) never mounted a challenge.
Glenwood had lost to Columbine in the regular season, 5-2, on Feb. 1 in Littleton.
After ceding the conference title to Summit (which suffered a 5-2 opening-round playoff loss to Castle View Monday night), the Demons have nothing more to play for but a shot at the state championship.
Next up: No. 2 seed Chaparral (13-2-3) at 7:50 p.m. Friday at the Family Sports Center in Hamilton in south Denver.
Webster was on fire, scoring two of the Demons three first-period goals at the 6:18 mark (assisted by Nolan McPherson) and at 11:53 (Max Mencimer on the assist).
“We were all clicking well together tonight, I just ended up benefiting from that by putting pucks in the net and finishing,” Webster said. “We’ve struggled at times getting pucks to the net in key moments throughout the regular season. We wanted to make sure we took advantage of our good scoring opportunities in the playoffs.”
Columbine’s Luke Juergensen sought to make it a game, scoring the Rebels’ only goal on the afternoon 10:44 into the first during a 5-on-4 power play.
Glenwood senior Colter Strautman extended the Demons’ lead to 3-1 late in the period on a power play of their own, coming off the stick of fellow senior and team co-captain Ryan Kotz.
Webster again found the net unassisted at 12:19 into the second period with both teams at full strength to make it 4-1, and essentially put the game out of reach.
Even so, the Roaring Fork High School student — one of several non-Glenwood students who play for the Demons — wasn’t quite done.
Webster added goals 1:23 into the third period (McPherson assist), and again at 5:23 (McPherson, Connor Powell), before Kotz closed out the Demon scoring at the 8:09 mark (McPherson).
Glenwood battered the Rebels for 34 shots on goal to Columbine’s 22 shots. Senior goalie Hunter Hadsock was mister reliable, stopping all but one of the opposing shots.
“We felt we came out of the gate strong,” Glenwood coach Tim Cota said. “It was one of our better first-period performances tactically; not many mistakes and great zone time offensively.”
Added assistant coach Joe luetke, “Our forecheck was relentless, great puck time and disciplined.”