BOULDER — Booting a corner kick from the right side with her right foot, no one really expected Boulder junior midfielder Molly Moran to spin a shot into the back of the net.
Moran herself admits she was merely aiming to put the ball near the back post to give one of her teammates a chance to score a goal.
“I think I kind of got lucky,” said Moran, noting that the ball spun off her shoe laces a little funky.
Luck or not, the 61st-minute goal brought the Panthers to life and helped propel them to a 3-3 draw with Arvada West when it looked like the visiting Wildcats were poised to leave Recht Field with a victory.
The tie leaves the Panthers without a win or a loss. They’re 0-0-2 after also equaling Niwot in the season opener. But they walked away excited Tuesday for the way they came up with scores when they absolutely needed them.
“I’m happy because we scored three goals against a really good team, and we didn’t do that last year until the last game of the season,” BHS coach Gary Grammer said.
Arvada West (0-0-1) controlled play for the majority of the game and led 2-1 when Moran lined up for her heroic shot. As the ball sailed nearer the goal, it caught Wildcats goalie Erin Stengel in no position to come up with the save.
“I thought it was definitely a turning point in the game,” said Moran, who also assisted on an Adrienne Lowney goal that tied the game at 1-1 in the first half. ” I felt like we picked it up a lot after that.”
The Panthers — a squad with no seniors looking to rise throughout the season — looked like they might even win when Sarah Pykenon fired a rocket from 30 yards out that sailed just over Stengel’s reach and into the net.
But A-West answered in the 77th minute with a Brionna Sandridge goal that tied the game at 3.
Each team mustered one serious threat in overtime — A-West in the first OT and Boulder near the end of the second — but neither could snare victory.
“It’s so frustrating when you’re so close and you think you have it and there’s so little time left, and then they get another one,” Pykenon said.
As with most ties, there was enough frustration to go around. The Wildcats, led by a pair of goals from Adranna Brite, were left feeling like they’d let a payback win slip away after falling to the Panthers last season.
“We just gave up a couple of unfortunate set pieces,” A-West coach Troy Gette said.
Boulder 3, Arvada West 3
At Recht Field
Arvada West (0-0-1) 1 0 0 0 — 3
Boulder (0-0-2) 1 2 0 0 — 3
Goals (assists) — Arvada West: Brite (unassisted), 10th minute; Brite (PK), 51st minute; Sandridge (unassisted), 77th minute. Boulder: Lowney (Moran), 18th; Moran (unassisted), 61st minute; Pykenon (unassisted), 72nd minute.
Goalkeepers (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Arvada West: Stengel (90-3-3); Boulder: Simpson-Johnson (90-3-8).