LAFAYETTE -- After 88 minutes of struggling to get a prime look, Niwot's Samantha Shaner felt curiously alone for a moment.
No worries, though. Her Niwot teammates would soon join her.
Shaner pounded home a penalty kick with two minutes left in double-overtime -- two minutes from a dreaded tie -- to give the Cougars a sudden 2-1 road win against surging Peak to Peak.
"I didn't even know what the call was at first," Shaner said. "Then I saw, and was like 'Oh, PK! This is our chance to win it.'"
The call was a tackle in the box on Peak to Peak goalie Chase Robbins, who ran into Niwot's Shannon Fischer while attempting to play a ball. Peak to Peak (5-1) believed the call was touchy for the situation, but Niwot (2-0-1) wasn't apologizing.
Peak to Peak, Class 3A runner-up last season, had outscored foes 25-0 entering the contest and had beaten the 4A Cougars 3-1 last season. None of that mattered when Shaner went right with her PK and it found the net.
"We created the opportunity, got the penalty and I just had to put it away," Shaner said. "It was a nice win because they beat us last year and it just kind of deflated our season."
Niwot jumped ahead 1-0 early in the second half when a tremendous long pass from Hannah Driscoll found Maria Fayuelle, who headed it in. Fayuelle was hardly celebratory, however, as Robbins inadvertently hit her in the eye area while trying to stop the shot.
Peak to Peak countered less than 10 minutes later when junior Belle Morel scored on a pass from Galen Roda to tie it 1-1.
Morel, an intense, fiery player, gave the referees an earful afterward and didn't disguise her true feelings about the overtime penalty.
"Honestly, it was a bad call," Morel said. "Chase was going for the ball. She got the player, but she got ball too. I don't know what the call was, but I think it was unfair."
Said Niwot coach Jeremy Drake: "They got tangled up and Shannon went down, so we got the PK. It was a fortunate call going our way, then Sam stepped up and put it away. It was great." Morel remained happy that she was able to help her team equalize things after the Pumas surrendered their first goal of the season. She also admitted that the call didn't solely decide things.
"They were a stronger team," Morel said. "They had good defense, nice attacking and (Fayuelle) is a good striker. It was a good game."
Niwot 2, Peak to Peak 1
At Peak to Peak H.S.
Niwot (2-0-1) 0 1 0 1 -- 2
Peak to Peak (5-1) 0 1 0 0 -- 1
Goals (assists) -- Niwot: Fayuelle (Driscoll), 43rd minute; Peak to Peak: Morel (Roda), 52nd; Niwot: Shaner (PK), 88th.
Goalkeepers (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) -- Niwot: Schoep (88-1-4); Peak to Peak: C. Robbins (88-2-4).