BROOMFIELD — When expectations are as high as they tend to be for the Broomfield girls soccer team, developments like a frustrating draw can be even more unsatisfying than usual.
The undefeated Broomfield Eagles played to a 3-3 tie with Fossil Ridge on Tuesday night in their first game since taking over the top spot in this week's CHSAANow.com Class 5A rankings this week. Though they remain undefeated after tying a solid Sabercats team, the stalemate against a Front Range League opponent despite leading twice in the game caused a bit more than frustration for the Eagles.
"Listen, Fossil Ridge deserves some credit, they played their way back into the match," Broomfield coach Jim Davidson said. "But I thought it was an embarrassing and selfish effort on our part. We played like a group of individuals and lacked any team approach, we didn't adjust at halftime and it just kind of went from bad to worse tonight."
The Sabercats (5-1-1, 4-1-1 Front Range) pulled ahead 1-0 early with a goal from Ashley Soulier but the Eagles (6-0-1, 5-0-1 Front Range) tied the game with an equalizing penalty kick from Hailey Stodden, who leads the Eagles with 16 goals. A second goal from Stodden gave the Eagles a 2-1 halftime lead.
Soulier tied the game with a second goal of her own before Eagles sophomore Mallory Mooney pushed the Eagles back into the lead with her 11th goal of the season. With time winding down on what would have been the Eagles' seventh victory of the spring, Sabercats sophomore Sophia Leone scored with 5 minutes, 15 seconds left in regulation to send the game into overtime.
Following two scoreless 10-minute extra periods, the Sabercats broke their postgame meeting with cheers. The Eagles, who reached the 5A state semifinals last season and, along with Fairview and Rocky Mountain, entered Tuesday's game with a perfect Front Range League record, left theirs quietly and looking inward for a way to get back on track.
"The competition is starting to tighten up and the girls have struggled a bit with that," Davidson said. "Our mentality is a little bit lacking. We were not good on Saturday even though we won 4-1. That score is a bit misleading and now we've put 180 minutes of pretty average soccer together, at best. The girls are going to have to decide whether they want to play as individuals or share the ball and go about it the Broomfield way.
"We have as much talent or more than I think we've ever had but we can't rely in talent alone. I think we got snake-bit tonight because of that."
On the opposing bench, Tuesday's win was a major step in the right direction for a Fossil Ridge club that has suffered three ACL tears in its last three games and has still managed to remain in the top half of the competitive Front Range League standings.
"Some of their players are just class," Fossil Ridge head coach Ian Wale said. "They're an organized team, a well-coached team and they obviously have some firepower. We rode our luck a little bit in the first half and then I thought we played our way into the game, slowly but surely. Broomfield is a class team, they always are, and any time you can come to Broomfield's field and walk away with a tie or win, you know you're doing something right."
The Eagles will be back in action on the road at Poudre (4-5, 2-4 Front Range) on Thursday.
Broomfield 3, Fossil Ridge 3
At Broomfield H.S.Fossil Ridge (5-1-1, 4-1-1) 2100—3
Broomfield (6-0-1, 5-0-1) 1200—3
Goals (assists) —Fossil Ridge: Ashley Soulier 2, Sophia Leone; Broomfield: Hailey Stodden 2, Mallory Mooney.
Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Fossil Ridge: Vicki Graham (100-3-12); Broomfield: Grace Fuller (100-3-4).