BROOMFIELD -- Playing rivalry games can sometimes be more intimidating when your rivals have a score to settle. Especially in the playoffs.
That was the case for the fourth-seeded Holy Family boys soccer team on Saturday. Hosting cross-town rival Peak to Peak, the No. 13 seed, in the second round of the Class 3A state tournament, the Tigers knew knocking the Pumas out would be a tough task after beating them during the regular season.
"We actually were really scared about Peak to Peak because we beat them in the regular season and we knew they'd have a chip on their shoulder," Tigers senior forward Preston Arguello said. "We knew they were gonna come out hard. The four years I've been here, we've lost to them four times so I'm happy to finally beat them twice."
After beating the Pumas during the regular season, the Tigers pulled out a 2-1 victory in the back-and-forth rematch.
Assisted by Arguello, junior forward Nate Dalton put the Tigers on the board in the 13th minute and the Tigers took a 1-0 lead into halftime.
In the 46th minute, however, the Pumas were awarded a penalty kick following a hard tackle in the box. Senior Tomas Lopez del Carril stepped up and buried the ball in the right side of the net to tie the game.
Eleven minutes later in the game's most spectacular play, Tigers senior forward Nick Rhoden fired a 25-yard shot from an impossible angle to put his team up 2-1.
"I didn't think I had an angle. It put me off balance," Rhoden said. "I couldn't have done it without Christian (Guerrero) on the sideline. He knows how I play and what I do so he fed me the ball."
After that, the Tigers dug in on defense and closed out the victory. Arguello said the Tigers were a bit sloppy towards the end. But, he noted, sometimes it doesn't take the prettiest soccer to win games.
Holy Family head coach Kathy Hogan said her team came out strong in the beginning and then sat back and defended well once they went up 2-1. Having not lost on their home field in two years, the Tigers were determined to keep the streak alive.
"They knew this was an important game," Hogan said. "We haven't lost on our field in two years and that was something they weren't going to give up to Peak to Peak today."
The Tigers defeated the Pumas 2-1 during the regular season. But the Pumas were missing a couple key players like Nico Meyer then. The Pumas also didn't play goalkeeper Max Clark in the field during the season, which they did once they fell behind 2-1 on Saturday.
Hogan said the Pumas have quality players up and down the lineup and the Tigers knew they'd have to be in top form to beat them at full strength.
Once Clark hit the field for extra offense, the Tigers marked him man-to-man with an outside midfielder.
The Tigers will face Kent Denver in the quarterfinals at 3:30 p.m. on Friday. It will be another home game for the Tigers.
The Tigers lost 2-1, including an early own-goal, to Kent Denver during the regular season. But Arguello said the Tigers dominated the game with 27 shots on goal so he is confident they'll be able to produce a better result.
"This time we play them on our field so I think we'll be great against them," Arguello said.
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Holy Family 2, Peak to Peak 1
At Holy Family H.S.
Peak to Peak (9-7-1, 3-4-1) 0 1 -- 1
Holy Family (13-3-2, 6-2-0) 1 1 -- 2
Goals (assists) -- Peak to Peak: Tomas Lopez del Carril (penalty kick), 46th minute. Holy Family: Nate Dalton (Preston Arguello), 13th minute; Nick Rhoden (Christian Guerrero), 57th minute.
Goalkeepers (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) -- Peak to Peak: Max Clark (60-2-8), Josh Gruener (20-0-4). Holy Family: Robert Hanley (80-1-5).