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Boys soccer: No time to spare, Broomfield beats Fort Collins

Zane Jacobson’s PK winner in the 64th was the difference

Broomfield's Russell Tuccio paces Fort Collins' ...
Brent W. New/
Broomfield’s Russell Tuccio paces Fort Collins’ Thatcher Sanders for possession on Tuesday, March, 23, 2021 in Broomfield.

BROOMFIELD — So much for an early-season, tune-up period.

Broomfield, after winning its state-best eighth boys soccer championship 16 months ago, have little time to round into form in hopes of defending it. With the pandemic still looming large, and the season slate and postseason field mightily trimmed, the room for error appears microscopic.

“We’re a program that wants to hit its stride as we enter playoff time and we don’t have that luxury this year,” Broomfield coach Jim Davidson said following Tuesday’s 3-2 win over Fort Collins. “With a 10-game season, with only two automatic qualifiers from the Front Range League, and only four at-large (bids) across the state, we got to figure out how to be good in these games right away.”

On a frigid night at Elizabeth Kennedy Stadium, the Eagles continued their all-league schedule inside the gauntlet that is the FRL, which sent a state-most eight teams to the 5A tournament a season ago. After furiously trading goals with the Lambkins in the latter part of the opening half, Zane Jacobson’s penalty kick winner in the 64th minute proved the difference.

Tied at 2-apiece, the senior midfielder, who’d stuck a header in right before halftime to draw the Eagles back even, lined up for the go-ahead shot after Byren Nelson was yanked down in the box. Afterward, he wouldn’t give away his secrets or methods that make up the mind game of a PK. He said he just visualized where to place it, and in real time, the ball screamed off his foot and struck the right corner of the net.

“All of us picked a word at the beginning of the season to describe what we wanted to accomplish this season, and my word was being ‘first’,” Jacobson said. “I always want to be first in making a big tackle, be the first one to score a goal and just want to lead the team and be an example.”

Russell Tuccio scored earlier for Broomfield, giving it a 1-0 lead in the 23rd minute.

The junior, coming off a sophomore campaign where he had seven goals and two assists, was the first to connect in what turned into a four-goal closing to the half. A long-ball overhead, David Little had used his head to get it into the box and Tuccio flawlessly redirected it. He slid to the ground as he touched the ball past Fort Collins keeper Brody Smith.

Oliver Ramirez responded with goals in the 26th and 35th minutes to give the Lambkins a brief lead. Jacobson answered that, spearing a header off a corner in the 37th.

The Eagles’ dramatic victory comes two days after playing to a draw against Fairview, the team they beat in a shootout in the second round of last season’s playoffs.

“We got to figure out how to be good in these games right away,” said Davidson, who noted having 12 players quarantined when practices began earlier in the month. “It’s hard because we’re still sorting things out. We haven’t really been able to coach the system, haven’t been able to train. We’re just trying to do the best we can with limited resources.”

Next, the Eagles travel to Fossil Ridge Thursday. The Sabercats were one of five FRL teams to reach the second round of the tournament a year ago.

Brent W. New/
Broomfield’s Reyn Tillman heads a chance in toward the goal against Fort Collins on Tuesday, March, 23, 2021 in Broomfield. (Photo by Brent W. New/