LONGMONT — Skyline’s Alex Meza took off his jersey following his way-long, overtime winner Wednesday afternoon.
His white undershirt had the name “Savion” and the No. 46 written on it. It’s the name and football number of Skyline student Savion Lowe, who died Tuesday.
“It breaks my heart, I saw him two days ago,” an emotional Meza said following the Falcons’ 5-4 win over Skyview. “To do this for him, to pay tribute, he meant a lot to everyone in this school.”
Meza, who said he joined the football team two weeks ago, where he was teammates with Lowe, paid quite the homage.
He scored twice, both via the free-kick. The first, from just outside the box, curled into the near, top corner of the net to give the Falcons a 3-2 lead late in the first half. His second — from just inside midfield and about 40 yards out — went over the keeper’s head and into the back of the net.
In celebration, he whipped off his jersey and rushed over to the home fans to celebrate. He pointed to “Savion” on his shirt and said this was for him.
“I placed the ball on the ground and I was going to ask (Skyline coach Luis Chavez) if I should shoot or just cross it in,” Meza said. “But I was like, you know, this looks like a clear shot to me.”
Along with Meza’s pair of highlight-reel goals, Cameron Piggott scored and set up another for the Falcons. Carson Manes and Diego Arteaga also scored.
Skyline (2-2) erased two first-half deficits and took the lead on Meza’s cruise-control placement in the 39th minute. Skyview (0-5) surged back ahead in the second half with successive goals from Jesse Alvarez and Jared Olave before Arteaga delivered the game’s fourth equalizer in the 60th.
From there, the scoring stalled as neither team could cash in late in regulation. Meza, for his part, hit the crossbar on one near-winner, and missed wide by a couple feet on another. It all led to a mesmerizing finish the Skyline community won’t soon forget.
“It’s inspirational,” Chavez said. “We’re a close community. The kids are a very close community. Everyone was wearing something in his memory and his name.”
The Wolverines clicked first, coming in the 15th minute, on a connection from Dante Espino to Olave. They’d pushed the ball deep into the box as Espino took a shot that was pushed aside by Skyline keeper Ethan Stoner. Espino then ran down the rebound and made a short, looping cross pass to Olave for the finish.
Skyline’s first reply came in the 25th on Manes’ putback chance. Senior forward Piggott slipped through defenders inside the box and released a point-blank chance that keeper Andres Mendoza cleared to his left. Corralled by Manes, the sophomore forward released from a tough angle and hit the far top corner of the net.
Skyview made it 2-1 a few moments later as Nicholas Marmolejo finished. Skyline drew even again as Piggott seeped through the backline and put away a short chance in the 31st.
The Falcons will host Greeley Central Monday to kick off play in the 5A/4A Northern League.
A GoFundMe page has been set up for Savion Lowe’s family. Click here to learn more.