ARVADA--It took the final game of the season, a second half comeback and a defensive header save in the final seconds for the Ralston Valley Mustangs to become league champions.
"It was even harder than what we thought it could be," Sophomore Midfielder Mason Miller said.
In what was essentially the Jefferson County league championship game, Ralston Valley came back from a 1-0 deficit to beat Arvada West 2-1, capping off an undefeated 7-0 campaign in league play.
Both teams came into the contest a perfect 6-0 against league foes.
"When the schedule came out, we all knew this was going to be such a big game," Miller said. "We knew that this could easily decide who would win the league."
It did. And, Miller made sure that it was Ralston Valley that came out on top.
With just under ten minutes remaining and the score tied 1-1, Miller lined up for a free kick just a few yards outside the box.
With the season on the line, Miller calmly drilled a perfect shot into the top right corner of the net to start the celebration for the Mustangs.
"To say that it all came to down to one play, I'm not surprised," Miller said. "But it's everything that led up to it that got us this win."
What led up to it was a hard-fought back and forth contest.
Arvada West had the first goal of the game on a free kick as well, scored by Luke Drumright.
But later in the half, Sam Keller knotted things up with a header goal off a corner kick.
Just like that, the Mustangs--who lost to Arvada West 5-1 last season--believed they could actually win the championship.