LAKEWOOD — There was a shot that just missed high, another ball that went off the post and a laser of a shot by Nicolette Sandoval that was stopped with a diving save.
The Holy Family girls soccer team showed it wasn’t intimidated by a higher seed in the Class 4A playoffs, but the Tigers couldn’t get the breaks they needed against Wheat Ridge. The missed chances were compounded by the Farmers cashing in on their opportunities, and they went on to a 3-1 win over Holy Family on Saturday.
The No. 13 Tigers’ season ended in the second round to fourth-seeded Wheat Ridge despite outshooting the Farmers and controlling a chunk of the game.
“We possessed better than them in the first half and we carried that through,” Sandoval said. “We were ready for an upset but unfortunately it didn’t work out.”
Sandoval got Holy Family’s only goal, but it came too late and long after the Farmers had built an insurmountable lead. She broke through the defense and booted the ball past Wheat Ridge goalkeeper Logan Duford in the 76th minute.
It merely prevented a shutout but couldn’t propel the Tigers to a comeback.
The Farmers built a three-goal lead with two tallies by freshman Emily Browne. She got the first one off a free kick in the 14th minute when she was able to knock it in while in a crowd.
She got the second one on a hard-angle shot in the 44th minute that made it 2-0 and put Holy Family in a deep hole.
“They didn’t have quality shots,” Tigers coach Michelle Griego-Giron said. “The goals they scored weren’t quality. We were out-possessing them but we couldn’t finish. We liked our chances.”
Holy Family (10-6-0) had two good ones near the end of the half. Sophomore Jaelen Giron hit one off the post in the 37th minute and Duford needed to make a diving stop on junior Jules Geneser’s shot with 6 seconds left.
Wheat Ridge (14-2-1) survived those close calls and then added two goals after halftime. Duford’s save on Sandoval’s chance in the 61st minute would have cut the lead in half but a goal on the penalty kick in the 67th minute made it 3-0.
“As long as there’s time on the board we’re going to keep playing,” Sandoval said.
The ending was disappointing but the future is encouraging for the young Tigers.
“We’ll take some time to digest everything. We’re graduating nine seniors but we have a lot of talent coming in,” Griego-Giron said. “We start nine sophomores so the program itself, the future is bright.”
Wheat Ridge 3, Holy Family 1
At Lakewood Memorial Field
Holy Family 0 1 — 1
Wheat Ridge 1 2 — 3
Goals (assists) — Holy Family: Nicolette Sandoval (Tyler Rose Whitlock), 76th minute. Wheat Ridge: Emily Browne (Molly Kratzer), 14th minute; Browne, 44th minute; Kratzer (penalty kick), 67th minute.
Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Holy Family: Sally Napierkowski (80-3-2); Wheat Ridge: Logan Duford (80-1-8).