Windsor girls soccer wins double overtime thriller
May 14, 2017
Windsor — Windsor's girls' soccer team has spoiled its fans the past few years.
The Wizards have scored early and often, consistently winning mercy rule-shortened games by 10 goals.
Saturday's rematch of last year's state quarterfinals at H.J. Dudley Field, however, taught Wizards fans a valuable lesson in patience.
Although there may have been some anxious moments in the stands, Windsor, as it almost always does, sent its fans home happy with a 2-1 double-overtime victory in the second round of the Class 4A girls soccer playoffs.
"(Cheyenne Mountain is) tested, they play some of the toughest 5A schools around," Windsor coach Mario Garcia said. "So when you play a team that's seen everything it's a very, very difficult matchup. I'm thrilled we could beat a team like Cheyenne Mountain."
First, fans waited for Cheyenne Mountain to show up as the Indians ran into troubles on their trip, causing the game to be delayed by 24 minutes.
Next, they waited for the Wizards to get on the board. They waited through numerous chances and even through a Cheyenne Mountain goal that put the Indians up 1-0.
They waited until the 32nd minute for Windsor to find the back of the net — a Meg Zimmerman bullet set up by a perfect pass from Abby Gearhart.
"It was important to get that goal before halftime because it helped change our mindset," Windsor sophomore Abby Gearhart said. "After we scored we're like 'alright, we're still in this, we can still win this.' "
That's where the score would stay heading into halftime and throughout the second half.
Again, Wizards fans were forced to wait as the match headed into its second overtime game of the season. The first came back on April 8, a double overtime thriller against Sand Creek that Windsor won 1-0.
With every missed opportunity, the fans moved a little closer to the edge of their seats, the most heart-wrenching of which being a Gearhart strike from the center of the box that was blocked by Cheyenne Mountain keeper Bella Zanotelli, but hung agonizingly in front an open net before Cheyenne Mountain was able to clear it out of bounds.
Neither team was able to get anything closer than that, sending the game into a second overtime.
That was until the 107th minute, when Wizards fans finally had a reason to get out of their seats completely.
It came off a flip toss inbounds throw by Chaynee Kingsbury. Abby Gearhart rose above her defender and headed it past the goalie.
"I was super tired, but I knew Chaynee's throw was going to make it to the box," Gearhart said. "So I just stayed back post and just waited for it to come and headed it in."
Best Individual Performance
Though Gearhart scored the winning goal, the only reason the Wizards were still in this game was their defense, capped by goalie Michaela Moran. Moran finished with seven saves and kept the game tied.
Could it be anything other than Gearhart's goal? It gave the Wizards their first lead at the only time that it mattered.
It doesn't get any easier from here for the Wizards as they head to Monument to take on the other team that has won a state championship in the past four years and defending state champion, Lewis-Palmer.
"We couldnt be more excited. … We've been to semis a few years in a row. Whatever happens, happens, but the ultimate goal is to win it all," Moran said.
Garcia echoed his sophomore forward's thoughts.
"We want to play them," he said."We've been wanting to play them. That's who we want, so we'll be ready."
CMHS 1 0 0 — 1
WHS 1 0 1 — 2
Scoring — WHS, Meg Zimmerman (Gearhart) 32:52, Gearhart 107:07; CMHS, Jamie Burke 27:15
Shots — WHS 21, CMHS 11.
Saves — WHS (Michaela Moran) 7, CMHS (Bella Zanotelli) 11.
Corner Kicks — WHS 3, CMHS 7