ARVADA — There was no winner Monday night at the North Area Athletic Complex.
Arvada West and Valor Christian ended the top-10 Class 5A boys soccer match-up in a scoreless tie after 100 minutes at the NAAC.
“Neither team could find the back of the net,” Arvada West senior goalie Jacoby Landskov said. “At the end of the day soccer is about scoring and neither one of us did.”
The tie between the No. 7 Wildcats and No. 9 Eagles actually helped out unranked Lakewood in the 5A Jeffco League standings. The Tigers (5-1-1, 5-1-1 in league) leaped over Valor (6-1-1, 5-1-1) and A-West (6-1-2, 4-1-2) in the conference standings.
If Lakewood gets a victory over Bear Creek on Thursday, April 15, at Lakewood Memorial Field the Tigers will claim the league title. It would be the first boys soccer league champion for Lakewood since 1995.
“It’s been a crazy season. We lost to Lakewood early so we’ve felt like since Game 2 in league we’ve been playing for our playoff lives,” Valor coach Brian Shultz said. “I would image Lakewood is pretty happy.”
Valor is currently second in 5A Jeffco. The top two teams in the league earn an automatic bid to the 16-team state tournament that begins next week with the first round on Tuesday, April 20.
“I think we are still as at No. 2 right now, but we have to take care of business against Dakota Ridge on Thursday,” Shultz said of the Eagles’ regular-season finale this week. “We won’t overlook him.”
A-West is in tougher spot. The Wildcats looked to be in-line to win a third straight conference title a week ago. A-West was undefeated and 4-0 in league play, but a 1-1 tie against Lakewood (April 8) and 2-0 loss to Chatfield (April 10), along with another tie versus Valor puts the playoffs in doubt for the Wildcats.
“Not a whole lot to say really,” Landskov said. “It is really disappointing. Both sides played great tonight. It just stinks to not come out on top and now not win in three games.”
The Wildcats must beat rival Ralston Valley on Thursday night at the NAAC for any chance to more than likely get one of the four at-large playoff bids if A-West finishes third in the league.
“We just have to win against Ralston Valley and see what happens from there,” Landskov said. “We can’t worry about anyone else.”
Landskov was solid recording his sixth shutout in net this season.
Valor had several set pieces that gave the Eagles scoring chances. The best scoring opportunity for Valor came in the first half. Sophomore Zac Brooks deflected a corner kick that looked to beat Landskov, but A-West sophomore Josh White was in the right place on the far post to keep the ball out of the net.
A-West senior Noah Kanagy and sophomore Luke Schultz both had hard shots saved by Valor freshman goalie Dennis Polzin a minute apart in the second half.
“He (Polzin) has been fantastic all year and his strength is in the air. We are such a possession team that is what most teams try to do is put balls in the air against us,” Shultz said. “We have two other great goalies too. We are blessed that way.”
The best scoring chance in the two 10-minute overtime periods came off the foot of Valor senior Tyler Eagan, but his direct free kick was just wide left midway through the first overtime.