COLORADO SPRINGS — For over 60 minutes, there was a lot physicality, just very little scoring. That all changed when a flurry in front of the net found the sure foot of Matt Hansen.
John Burnett, Windsor's leading scorer, was good for more than a goal per game all season long, but to win the Class 4A boys soccer title, he opted for an assist. His header sent the ball into the direction of the net where Hansen converted the lone goal of the game, getting a 1-0 win over Denver North. For the first time in school history Windsor is a boys soccer state champion.
"It is the history of Windsor High School,"Windsor coach Philip Weiser said. "They have drawn the map to greatness. They have drawn the map for everyone who comes after them to get to the top. That's the definition of greatness."
The Wizards (14-0 overall) knew that physicality was going to be a part of their battle at Weidner Field, the home of the Colorado Springs Switchbacks.
It was a challenge they were happy to embrace. Each team was dealt mulitple yellow cards and there were will likely be a few score body parts in the coming days. But being handed the state championship trophy in front of a rowdy Windsor crowd made every bump and fall worth it.
"It's always worth it," Burnett said. "You always have to fight for that. No one's going to give it to you."
It was in the second half of the battle that the Wizards were able to break the scoreless tie. A corner kick went right into Burnett's direction and he fired a header toward the direction of the net. The second touch came from Hansen who put it into the net, unleashing a wave of emotion through the Wizards roster.
"Happiness, excitement," Hansen said. "I can't really explain it, it's a state final. The first one in school history and it's good to get our name in the history books."
While they played at a fast pace, the Vikings (12-2) could never get settled on the offensive side and generate many great scoring opportunities. Lukas Williams had been solid in net all year, allowing just seven goals heading into the championship game.
"We don't really talk too much about the other team, we just talk about us," Hansen said. "Going into halftime, we just knew we had to tuck in and stay more connected in the middle."
This was the first state championship game in school history for the boys soccer team. The Wizards are normally a high-scoring team, averaging 3.7 goals per game heading into Saturday. But in order to make history for the school, all they needed was one.
"Every time we walk through the gym, there's an empty spot for a state championship flag," Burnett said. "We keep saying that is where the flag is going to go. And that's where it's going. It's amazing.