AURORA | Matt Dreiling knows how much energy scoring the first goal in any soccer game — much less a high-stakes Class 5A state playoff game — can give to a team.
The Grandview senior gave his team a major jolt when he put it on scoreboard first Saturday evening 15 minutes into the opening half of a quarterfinal contest against Arvada West at Legacy Stadium, which played host to its largest crowd of the season.
Though coach Brian Wood’s fourth-seeded Wolves could have had a handful of goals if not for missing on a few finishes and the play of the opposing goaltender, Dreiling’s goal off a cross from junior Charlie Lucero stood up as the game-winner in 1-0 victory over the 12th-seeded Wildcats.
“It’s a big boost to the morale, everybody is fired up and ready to go when you get the first goal,” Dreiling said of his third goal of the season and first since April 10, which sent Grandview into the semifinals for the third time in the past four seasons.
The Wolves’ defense and senior goalkeeper Noah Tsehaye made the goal stand up as they combined for a fifth consecutive shutout.
Grandview improved to 11-1 and will now have a chance to avenge their only loss of the season, which came to Cherry Creek in the season opener. Grandview will meet 16th-seeded Cherry Creek — which upset No. 9 Boulder 1-0 in overtime — on April 28 at Englewood High School in one of two semifinals, with game times to be determined.
The other semifinal pits No. 3 Liberty — a 2-1 winner over No. 6 Pine Creek — against No. 2 Fairview, which defeated No. 7 Castle View on penalty kicks.
Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports
(4) GRANDVIEW 1, (12) ARVADA WEST 0
Score by halves:
Arvada West 0 0 — 0
Grandview 1 0 — 1
Grandview — Matt Dreiling (Charlie Lucero), 15th minute