BROOMFIELD — It only takes one goal to open the floodgates, as Broomfield boys soccer learned on Monday night.
The Eagles, ranked No. 3 in Class 5A, put on a late-game clinic against No. 8 Fairview in a classic top-10, Front Range League match between two soccer powerhouses. After spending the first half off the scoreboard, the Eagles rallied late to defeat the Knights 3-1. Both teams scored with headers.
The BHS offense continued to be prolific, as it has all season. With the win, the Eagles stayed atop the FRL at 4-0 with an overall record of 8-2. The Knights, on the other hand, fell to 6-3-1 with a 2-2 league record.
Broomfield trailed 1-0 at the half after a number of chances to amend that number through the first 40 minutes.
“We respect that group, they played extremely well, but it felt like we were going to get some chances and to just have them not materialize as much as we needed them to in the first half and to go in at halftime down 1-0 was hard,” Broomfield head coach Zach Hindman said. “It’s a place we’ve been before, unfortunately. The guys stuck with it. They showed their grit, they showed their determination and their willingness to stick to the game plan and I’m really happy that they came out and got a couple of goals out of that.”
Fairview sophomore defender Mark Litwiler put his team up on the board early, when he positioned himself perfectly for a corner kick to score on his subsequent header in the fifth minute.
Broomfield junior Marcus Von returned the favor midway through the second half when he scored on his own corner-kick header to tie the game. Six minutes later, junior Luis Meza Acosta added to the Eagles’ tally when his teammate, Adam Thresher, drew Fairview senior keeper Shane Williams out of the goal to set Acosta up for the score. Senior Cooper Johnson knocked in one more in the 75th.
Up until that point, Williams had played like a brick wall as Broomfield tested the Fairview defense’s resolve time and time again.
“It was coming,” Von said. “We played well. It’s a trend this year. We’ve just got to figure a team out and then we score three goals in 20 minutes. When I hit the header, I didn’t think it was going in, but when I saw it go in, I was so happy.”
Despite the setback, the Knights have been able to put together their own strong slate, as has become the norm.
Fairview’s state championship from the spring of 2021 is still inspiring and guiding the Knights two seasons later, and the younger players have continued to carry the torch that that squad ignited.
Williams was instrumental in that season’s success and went so far as to stop a Broomfield shot on goal with his collarbone in the opening minutes of Monday night’s contest.
“The first strength of our team comes from our captains,” Fairview coach Eric Schuler said. “All three of them are state champions. We’re anchored behind who I think’s the best goalkeeper in the state for the last three years. And up until tonight, we’ve not conceded a single goal through the run of play this season. They’ve been little tap-in set plays or things like that, but we’ve not actually conceded a goal in open play because Shane, and this captain group (Williams, Joseph Lee and Kai Bodmer) is so strong.”
Fairview’s offense gave itself plenty of chances to put more goals on the board as well against an equally strong Broomfield defense, but none of them materialized after the first five minutes of play.
Now, the Knights will look to place themselves back in the win column when they host Monarch on Thursday night as Broomfield travels to Mountain Range on the same night.
“I think our backline has done really well to just keep shots from going through and getting through to me and just staying pretty calm sometimes when we’re able to play,” Williams said. “I think (this loss is) something that can send a message for our team with what we need to do and how hard we need to work to get there.”