Cherry Creek field hockey rallies to beat Colorado Academy, reach title game

Cherry Creek Colorado Academy field hockey

(Jeff Tucker/jefferywtucker.zenfolio.com)

DENVER — Down a goal early, Cherry Creek field hockey rallied to score three unanswered goals and secure a spot in field hockey's championship game.

The Bruins, top-seeded and undefeated, beat No. 4 Colorado Academy 3-1 at All-City Stadium on Thursday. Ella Pratt, Isabella Balbona and Kristen Kelley scored for Cherry Creek.

This marks Cherry Creek's first appearance in the title game since 2015, and seventh overall. The Bruins (16-0-1) will try to win their first title since 2007.

Colorado Academy (12-4-1) started the scoring late in the first half when Remy Sherman poked home a goal following a short corner attempt, and a scramble in front of the goal. The initial shot from Lauren McKee had been deflected by Katherine Merrifield on its way in.

But Cherry Creek's Ella Pratt scored a crucial goal with just 50 seconds left in the first half, after the Bruins had secured a short corner of her own. Pratt's shot deflected off a defender's stick, soared high into the air, and caught the top left corner of the net to make it 1-1.

It stayed that way at halftime, and the Bruins came out charging the second half.

Isabella Balbona scores for the Bruins in close to give them a 2-1 lead less than than four minutes in, and Kristen Kelley gave them a two-goal lead 10 minutes after that.

The two teams played in the regular season finale, a 1-0 Cherry Creek win.

Cherry Creek will play Regis Jesuit in the championship on Thursday. The Raiders beat Kent Denver in the semifinals.