Cheyenne Mountain was in desperate need of a goalkeeper, and David McDermed was almost perfect in answering the call.
The junior — usually a defenseman/midfielder — was a stone wall for 76 minutes against Pine Creek on Tuesday in his first varsity start after winning the spot Monday in a tryout at practice. But the Eagles finally broke through when Connor Flynn aggressively fought for a loose ball following a Casey Blake feed and the Eagles were able to crack the McDermed wall to earn a 1-0 victory at District 20 Stadium.
“I couldn’t of gotten it without Casey Baker’s great cross off the corner kick,” Flynn said. “We definitely stepped it up in the second half, got possession and finally just knocked one in there at the end. It was a great get.”
The Eagles (2-2) used a set play after failing to convert on their previous four corners in the second half. Instead of immediately crossing the ball, Baker dribbled a little closer before feeding Flynn for the game-winner.
“There was a lot of traffic in front and it was a pretty, good, rough and aggressive game from their defenders and our forwards,” added the 6-foot-6 senior.
Baker had nearly broken the scoreless tie at the 73th minute with a blistering shot from the right side that McDermed snagged with his hands for his seventh save of the game.
The Indians (2-1) turned to McDermed after starter Erich Frey (elbow injury) and backup Slade Custer (an ineligible transfer) were unable to play.
“It was crazy and was wild. I came in and literally had no clue what I was doing,” said McDermed, who had seen limited time at goalie in junior varsity. “I had to come in confident. I couldn’t come in with the attitude that I was going to lose it. You just have to salvage that you’re the boss and that’s your box.”
Cheyenne Mountain coach Tomas Martinez couldn’t have been happier with his goalie’s performance. He just could have done without allowing five corner kicks.
“He stepped up and did what we wanted. I don’t fault him for that goal,” Martinez said. ‘It was kind of garbage and it was messed up in [the box]. We just can’t give up those corners. It’s a lack of discipline.”
Pine Creek coach Ben Cooley liked his team’s aggression in the second half.
“They really dominated possession in the first half,” Cooley said. “It was more like a 60-40 sort of first half for them and all we talked about at halftime was keeping the ball some and opportunities will come from that. The second half was a complete reversal of the first.”
Martinez said it is most likely McDermed will be in net when the Indians host Pueblo West Thursday, unless Frey is ready to go.
“I have all the faith in David and if we had to take him the rest of the season we would go with him,” Martinez said.