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Boys soccer: Williams, Harezlak lead Fairview past Boulder and into 5A quarterfinals

Harezlak scores winner in the 78th minute

  • Fairview High School's Kai Bodmer (No. ...

    Fairview High School's Kai Bodmer (No. 20), Joseph Lee (No. 16) and Ben Ortman (No. 3) celebrate a goal by Hugo Harezlak (No. 7) against Boulder High School in Class 5A state tournament second round game on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Boulder High School's Owen Kalisher (No. ...

    Boulder High School's Owen Kalisher (No. 00) keeper kicks the ball into the Fairview High School zone on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Fairview High School's Nolan Kelly (No. ...

    Fairview High School's Nolan Kelly (No. 8) runs with the ball while followed by Boulder High School's Dale Boyer (No. 25) on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Fairview High School's Oscar Graycar (No. ...

    Fairview High School's Oscar Graycar (No. 9) collides with Boulder High School's River Diamond (No. 13) on Tuesday night. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Fairview High School's Hugo Harezlak (No. ...

    Fairview High School's Hugo Harezlak (No. 7) tries to keep the ball from Boulder High School's River Diamond (No. 13) on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Boulder High School's Logan Sims (No. ...

    Boulder High School's Logan Sims (No. 19) celebrates a goal by Cameron Gerber (No. 10) against Fairview High School on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Fairview High School's Oliver Harmon (No. ...

    Fairview High School's Oliver Harmon (No. 11) and Boulder High School's Kevin Botello (No. 21) chase after the ball on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Boulder High School's Jose Ordaz (No. ...

    Boulder High School's Jose Ordaz (No. 11) and Milo Toutenhoofd (No. 8) celebrate a goal by Cameron Gerber (No. 10) against Fairview High School on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • From left: Fairview High School's Shane ...

    From left: Fairview High School's Shane Williams (No. 24), Mark Litwiler (No. 5) and Cole Hamilton (No. 2) celebrate their win over Boulder in a Class 5A state tournament second round playoff game Tuesday night. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

  • Fairview High School's Tate Ruzzin (No. ...

    Fairview High School's Tate Ruzzin (No. 14) redirects the ball past Boulder High School's Logan Sims (No. 19) on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

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Senior Shane Williams has been so good in net for Fairview since taking over the starting job during the program’s championship run two seasons ago, that often the difference between a blank sheet and a loss is no more than bad luck.

Give the Knights’ Iron Curtain backup and good fortune can feel like fate.

Hugo Harezlak scored in the 78th minute to assist another spectacle from the team’s trusted keeper and No. 12 Fairview got the better of No. 5 Boulder this time around in a 2-1 win Tuesday night in the Class 5A state tournament second round.

The two local programs met for a fifth time in the postseason since 2010, having split the previous four.

The win sent Fairview into the quarterfinals for a seventh time in nine seasons and its first after winning the state title in the spring of 2021. Boulder was ousted prior to the quarters for only a third time since winning its first of two state titles in 2012.

Fairview High School's Oscar Graycar (No. ...
Fairview High School’s Oscar Graycar (No. 9) collides with Boulder High School’s River Diamond (No. 13) on Tuesday night. (Matthew Jonas/Staff Photographer)

“This game is obviously extra meaningful, and I think emotionally it’s probably the most important game of our season after losing to Boulder (1-0 on Sept. 24),” Williams said. “To be back in the quarterfinals, I think me and Kai Bodmer are the only two from that (state championship) team. And I think the emotions are going to be crazy there.”

Harezlak’s second goal of the season will likely be his most memorable in high school. His rebound chance in front of the net kissed the far post and went in with 2:51 remaining.

Moments before, uber-talented keeper Owen Kalisher turned away Tate Ruzzin’s initial try from just outside the box but a second chance skipped to Harezlak for the winner. Logan Sims nearly tied it seconds later, though his chance missed just wide.

“Honestly I didn’t know if it was going in because it bounced off the post and in, but I was thrilled when it went in,” Harezlak said. “The whole team has been practicing hard and I think we deserved that win. We’ve been practicing those tap-ins.”

Oscar Graycar also scored for Fairview (11-5-1), tallying his second of the fall via a long free kick in the 33rd. Cameron Gerber tied things on a penalty drawn by Sims in the 63rd.

Earlier in the day, Gerber was selected as the lone representative from Colorado for the upcoming All-American Game in Florida. He joined Omar Castruita of Boulder (2018) and Shane O’Neill of Fairview (2011) as local standouts chosen for it.

Williams heard the news and congratulated him after the game.

“I’ve played with Cam in club (soccer) and I’ve played against him for years,” Williams said. “I have a lot of respect for him. I think he recently got All-American, and he deserves it.”

Boulder’s season is over after it (again) touched the top ranking in the state during the season and finished 11-5-1.

As part of the emotional close, coach Hardy Kalisher embraced his son Owen.

“There is always a risk when you play the game. This game is always going to have a winner and someone who loses,” the coach said. “They may have lost this game, but I think they won the season. I’m proud of all of them.”

Fairview will face No. 4 Broomfield Saturday at Englewood High School.

With a grin, coach Eric Schuler’s message for it: “Play technical, play with spirit, don’t give up free kicks.”