BROOMFIELD — Nothing will come easy for Broomfield boys soccer this season, but that’s just the way the Eagles like it.
Broomfield, which entered the contest ranked No. 3 in CHSAANow.com’s Class 5A coaches poll, couldn’t shake a nearly impenetrable defense as it fell to No. 2 Valor, 2-0, on its home pitch for its second straight setback. Two days earlier, the Eagles lost 2-1 to No. 5 Cherokee Trail.
A goal in the waning seconds broke what had been a 1-0 game throughout the previous 61 minutes.
“They want to win every game that they play, but the reality is that we play in a really long season, and playing these tough teams before we play other tough teams in our league is really good for us,” head coach Zach Hindman said. “It allows us to adjust. It allows us to start making sure we know how to deal with adversity and respond in the right ways. Honestly, I thought we played really, really well, especially in the second half. The result is a little bit misleading with that goal at the end when we’ve got our goalkeeper forward.”
The Eagles struggled to get much past the Valor defense throughout the first half as Valor, in turn, pressured Broomfield left and right. Senior keeper Evan Kulstad and his Eagle defense continued to respond well until, in the 19th minute, Valor’s Zac Brooks rocketed a shot from 25 yards out and into the back right corner of the net.
That put the host Eagles into a precarious position, but they couldn’t get a shot on goal throughout the rest of the half.
Broomfield flipped the script on Valor in the second half, testing its keeper much more than it did in the first 40 minutes, but most shots soared over the crossbar. Despite chance after chance, the boys couldn’t quite connect but certainly put Valor’s goalie to work. Now, they’ll focus on ironing out the wrinkles so they can right the ship heading into Front Range League play.
“We started off the nonconference games, kind of worked our way up,” sophomore defender Cole Martin said. “We’ve got some things to work on and the level of talent that we’re playing now has gotten much better, so we need to rise too. I think we’re playing good. We just need to maximize our chances and just limit our mistakes, but I think even with the better competition we could still thrive even after those two losses.”
Now 4-2, the Eagles will look to bounce back against a 5-1 Northglenn team when the two squads meet on Thursday next week. The time off may just be what Broomfield needs, but Martin has no doubt their two setbacks will benefit them in the long run.
“I think through the years, Broomfield’s been better as underdogs rather than top dog,” he said. “I think this will show a lot about our character and I think we’ll come back stronger and just show everybody who we really are.”