LONGMONT — Niwot forward Keegan Stobbe pieced together a season’s worth of highlights in a fantastic blink Tuesday night.
Three goals. A bicycle kick that could’ve been. In a span of 19 minutes and 24 seconds, Stobbe had the limelight all to himself at Everly-Montgomery Field in the Cougars’ 5-1 win over Longmont.
“He’s been kind of a quiet workhorse for us this season and hasn’t really lit up the stat book,” Niwot coach Stephen Dimit said. “This was his game to break out and we needed it.
“He just brought the fire.”
Tied 1-1 at half, Niwot (9-4, 5-0 4A Northern League) scored four times in less than 20 minutes. Stobbe, who’d had two goals in the team’s first 12 games, had three of them and assisted the other for his second helper of the night.
The junior gave the Cougars their first lead in the 41st minute when he lifted a 30-yard chance past Longmont keeper Connor Taylor. Extended it as he speared through the box to slam home a header off a corner kick in the 56th, then finished his night with a pinpoint rocket to the opposite corner of the net in the 61st.
He was met with a loud applause as he came off the field with 18:33 remaining.
“I just started scoring, putting away opportunities,” Stobbe said. “Just dominated.”
In the middle of all of it, he’d nearly scored the rare-and-vaunted bicycle kick, too. The floppy-haired magician flipped to his back in the box and struck a crossing chance cleanly, but Taylor got his body on it and it skirted away.
“I’ve been that close about five times already in my past three years, but the keeper has saved it like that,” Stobbe said. “I’ll get it. I’ll get lucky.”
Niwot enters its final stretch of the season holding the 16th 4A RPI spot as of Tuesday afternoon with two games remaining.
And while the Cougars’ win over the Trojans (3-8-1, 1-2-1) shouldn’t drastically move their RPI seed, it helped keep them par for the course in the Northern League, where they pushed a half-game ahead of idle Silver Creek (8-1-2, 4-0).
Niwot will visit the Raptors Oct. 22 with a potential league title in the balance.
“The tough part about this season is we know it’s there,” Dimit said. “In games like this, we talked, you got to pay attention to what’s right in front of you. Silver Creek is a rival and has a lot of friends with these guys. So, obviously we’re watching (the league standings), but we’re trying to keep it game-by-game right now.”
Longmont took the lead on Jan Berger’s goal in the 15th minute. On a free kick inside the box, Berger took a quick tap from Bryan Saenz and went top shelf over a Niwot wall of defenders.
Aidan Martin then tied the game on a feed from Stobbe in the 27th. Turns out, Stobbe was just getting started.