AURORA | The overall record might not look pretty, but the Smoky Hill boys soccer team is very much still alive in the chase for the Class 5A playoffs.
Coach Kersten Mullan’s Buffaloes sit at 4-8-1 overall, but the record in the Centennial League is a lot better at 3-1-1 after Tuesday afternoon’s 2-0 victory over visiting Mullen at The Swamp.
Smoky Hill honored a large senior class, then got second half goals from senior Bryan Gonzalez Hernandez and junior Jacob Roldan to keep itself in the hunt for the second automatic playoff qualifying spot in the league behind runaway leader Arapahoe.
Grandview — a 3-1 winner over Eaglecrest — Cherry Creek, a 1-0 loser to Arapahoe and Cherokee Trail, which downed Overland 1-0 in overtime, also remain in the chase with two games to go for each team.
Gonzalez Hernandez broke a scoreless tie less than five minutes into the second half when he turned and ripped a shot just past diving Mullen goalkeeper Jaden Trujillo for his fifth goal of the season.
The Buffaloes kept the Mustangs at bay defensively and continued to push for an insurance goal, which they finally got in the 61st minute after a foul in the goal box gave them a penalty kick attempt.
Roldan took the kick and though Trujillo got a piece of the shot, the ball continued into the net for Roldan’s third score of the year and a 2-0 advantage.
Senior goalkeeper Jhaeyden Clemons made a big save late to preserve his second shutout of the season.
Smoky Hill finishes the season with two important contests, a 4:30 p.m. game Thursday against Cherry Creek at Village Green Park and an Oct. 20 matchup with Cherokee Trail at Stutler Bowl.
Courtney Oakes is Aurora Sentinel Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. FB: Aurora Prep Sentinel
SMOKY HILL 2, MULLEN 0
Score by halves:
Mullen 0 0 — 0
Smoky Hill 0 2 — 2
Smoky Hill goals: Bryan Gonzalez Hernandez, Jacob Roldan.