FORT COLLINS — Alan Scheuermann was at a loss for words over his showing Monday night at Fossil Ridge. The Fairview keeper’s coach was definitely not.
Stan Jozwiak made no bones about the junior’s defensive display in the Knights’ second-round win in the Class 5A state tournament — it was clutch.
Scheuermann far from single-handedly delivered second-seed Fairview its 2-1 win over No. 7 Fossil Ridge, but he certainly got the Knights through some rocky stretches.
“He’d be our player of the match with his second half,” Jozwiak said.
Scheuermann finished the night with nine saves with his biggest showings coming to start and finish the second half. The junior halted an early charge by the Sabercats, diving to save a screaming near-post attempt to keep the game 0-0. He then preserved Fairview’s lead late, denying Fossil Ridge at every turn.
After fumbling a few saves and making a few of the FHS faithful’ hearts skip a beat in the first half, the keeper was pleased with his finish.
“I started out really sketchy in the first half,” he said. “But by halftime I was able to regroup and get my confidence back.”
The win puts Fairview into Saturday’s quarterfinals against second-seed Denver East. And while Monday night’s game might not have done much for the Knights’ nerves, the team believes the win built plenty of momentum.
“This gave us a lot of confidence,” Scheuermann said. “It’s probably the hardest game we’ve played all season and probably the best.”
One of the areas the Knights showed the most grit was rebounding from a sluggish first half on offense. And there was one player in particular was sparked Fairview’s offense. Eric Kronenberg netted both of the team’s goals, breaking the 0-0 stalemate, then delivering the game-winner.
While he was happy to get the Knights back on track with his opening volley in the 53rd minute, it was his strike in the 69th minute he said forwards dream about. But he also pointed out, it was definitely not a one-man job.
“Obviously you want to be that guy who scores the game-winner in the last few minutes,” he said. “But I didn’t do much. I got a ball in the middle of the box, five-feet away from the goal and just had to tap it in.”
The difference between Fairview’s productive second half and slow-to-start first was the way the team attacked, Kronenberg said.
“The first, we were doing a lot of send balls,” he said. “The second, we brought it across the box.”
Even with the Knights’ strong second, there were some nervy moments. None more so than when Adam Blair hit the equalizer for Fossil Ridge in the 67th minute.
“That was tense,” Jozwiak said.
Follow Elwood on Twitter: @ElwoodKShelton
Fairview 2, Fossil Ridge 1
At Fossil H.S.
Fairview (13-3-1) 0 2 — 2
Fossil Ridge (13-3) 0 1 — 1
Goals (assists) — Fairview: Eric Kronenberg (Adam O’Maitu), 53rd minute; Fossil Ridge: Adam Blair (unassisted), 67th minute; Fairview: Eric Kronenberg (Charlie Bowers), 69th minute.
Goalkeepers (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Fairview: Alan Scheuermann (80-1-9). Fossil Ridge: Justin Aguero (80-2-6).
Follow Elwood on Twitter @ElwoodKShelton.