PARKER | The Regis Jesuit boys soccer team continued to build the pressure in the second half of Wednesday night’s Class 5A semifinal until it finally broke through.
Staved off repeatedly by Pine Creek goalkeeper Eli Young on prime scoring chances, senior Casey McCloskey finally buried one for the Raiders to break a scoreless with 16 minutes left in regulation and they made it stand up in a 1-0 victory at frigid EchoPark Stadium.
McCloskey’s clutch goal — yet another in a season in which he has a team-best 13 goals — on a ball kept in by teammate Braden Murphy gave Regis Jesuit the margin it needed to advance to the 5A state championship game for the first time since 2008, when it lost to Denver East in double overtime.
Coach Rick Wolf’s Raiders will try to add the program’s fifth all-time state title — and what would be the first since 1996 — when they face off with ninth-seeded Broomfield at 6 p.m. Friday at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, home of the Colorado Rapids.
The Eagles earned their title shot with a 2-1 overtime win over rival and fifth-seeded Boulder in the other semifinal. Broomfield is the state’s all-time leader in total championships with seven, with its most recent coming in 2017 in its fourth consecutive trip to the state title game.
Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports
(6) REGIS JESUIT 1, (18) PINE CREEK 0
Score by halves:
Pine Creek 0 0 — 0
Regis Jesuit 0 1 — 1
Regis Jesuit — Casey McCloskey (Braden Murphy), 64th minute