LONGMONT — Both Skyline and Mead entered Wednesday night's Tri-Valley League finale needing a positive result to feel better about their fate when the Class 4A state bracket is released on Sunday by CHSAA.
And while both teams were in based on their latest RPI standing, it was the visiting Falcons, at No. 29, that needed it just a little more.
And for over 70 minutes on a miserably wet night, it looked as though coach Luis Chavez's team might be dealt a hard-luck 1-0 loss. But sophomore Lindrey Schendel came to the rescue, with an equalizer in the 73rd minute and then the game-winner in double overtime.
"The rain was something we came in worried about, but it was a lot of fun, the energy was just really good," said Schendel, whose team will play one more game on Thursday at home against 5A Arvada West. "We knew we had this game, we just had to go out there and get it."
The Falcons (8-6 overall, 5-2 in the TVL) had the run of play early on against a Mavericks team that came in having lost two in a row to the league's front-runners Windsor and Holy Family.
Yet Skyline had nothing to show for its effort and it was the host Mavericks that struck first against the run of play.
A ball over the top sprung junior Peyton Fox for the first of four 1-vs.-1 chances with Skyline keeper Kenna Meier and she chipped a shot over the keeper's head and tucked it just inside the far post for a 1-0 Mavs lead.
Fox nearly made it 2-0 in the 38th minute, but had her shot kicked away by Meier to preserve the one-goal deficit.
"I love (Kenna) so much and she has saved our butt so much," Schendrel said. "She just gets in there and does what she needs to do."
It stayed that way until the 73rd minute, when the Falcons — whose freshman Casey Erickson had an early second-half chances saved by an equally impressive Bre Encinas — finally netted the equalizer.
A great ball by Molly Hennessy pierced the defense and was right on target to Schendel, who finally solved Encinas.
In the first overtime Meier again denied Fox to extend the game.
And in the second overtime (when the rain started coming down its hardest), Schendel took a chance from outside the box — knowing the ball was going to skip on the wet turf — and beat Encinas, who got a hand on it, just inside the post.
"I figured I'll just go for it and there it was," Schendel said.
It was the third straight defeat for the Mavericks (9-5, 4-3), who won't have much time to dwell on it. They will travel to Woodland Park on Thursday in search of not only some momentum heading into the postseason but a positive result that will help their No. 22 RPI rating.
"Tomorrow will be huge," Mead coach Shane Adler said. "We need it."
SKYLINE 2, MEAD 1, 2OT
At MeadSkyline (8-6, 5-2) 0 1 0 1 — 2
Mead (9-5, 4-3) 1 0 0 0 — 1
Goals (assists) — Mead: Peyton Fox (unassisted), 23rd minute; Skyline: Lindrey Schendel (Molly Hennessey), 73rd; Schendel (unassisted), 99th.
Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Skyline: Kenna Meier (99--1-5); Mead: Breanna Encinas (99-2--7).