THORNTON — Nobody would have blamed Fairview senior Brooke Berdan if she'd decided to simply put her free kick from 30 yards away on net late in a scoreless girls soccer game Tuesday night.
The Auburn commit certainly has plenty of leg. Apparently, though, she has plenty of trust in her teammates, too.
In the 58th minute, Berdan, tabbed to the right side of the field, scanned a set line of Fairview and Legacy players positioned left of the net. Instead of ripping a shot, she sent a curling ball in perfect unison with the break of her teammates.
On the back end, Aspen Anderson leapt forward and struck a clean header past Legacy standout keeper Katie Dunbabin in what turned out to be the winning strike in the Knights' 1-0 win over the Lightning at Five Star Stadium.
"I knew exactly where I wanted to put it because I had faith in my team that they were going to finish it," Berdan said. "I kind of called a lot of other players off the ball who wanted to take it. And I just hit it and knew someone like (Anderson) would nail it into the back of the net."
Anderson admitted afterward that on setups like that you can't quite track the ball the entire way. It also takes a little faith.
"Kind of going back to the trust thing, it was just having trust she'd put it in the right place," the junior said. "You can't see it the whole time, so you just have to follow through with your run. And you hope the ball gets there, and if it does, then it's a good look."
A matchup between two teams expected to make plenty of noise in the Class 5A Front Range League, and perhaps further, certainly didn't disappoint. Strong pushes from both sides swiveled momentum in either direction over the course of 80 minutes.
Lightning coach Luke Meadows described it to a prize fight.
"The overall energy level was spectacular from both teams," Meadows said. "When one pushes, the other pushes back. And when one pushes harder, the other pushes harder. It was back-and-forth."
He told his team at half that it was going to come down to "one chance."
The Berdan-Anderson connection helped Fairview (4-2, 2-1 FRL) remain unbeaten against Legacy (3-3-1, 1-2) since 2013, improving to 5-0-1 against its league rival over the past six seasons. Even more, it helped the Knights get off to a strong start in a stretch of six games in 12 days.
Fairview will travel to Boulder Thursday before it plays on consecutive days next week against Fossil Ridge and Greeley West on the 15th and 16th. Then it has Poudre on the 18th and Cherry Creek on the 20th.
At the final horn, Knights coach Steve Griggs made sure his team got into a cooldown pretty quickly.
"It's all about recovery in postgame, taking care of ourselves, and moving on to the next one," Fairview's first-year coach said. "This is a tough two-week stretch for us."
The Knights remained a game back in the loss column to league-leading Broomfield (7-0, 4-0), which beat Rocky Mountain 2-1 Tuesday. Legacy fell two losses back in the standings.
Brent W. New: email@example.com and @brentwnew
Fairview 1, Legacy 0
At Five Star StadiumFairview (4-2, 2-1) 0 1 — 1
Goals (assists) —Fairview: Anderson (Berdan) 58th minute; Legacy: No goals.
Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Fairview: Velds (40-0-2), Mousseau (40-0-2); Legacy: Dunbabin (80-1-9).