It took Cheyenne Mountain's Chicken to stop the Indians from running around and head them in the right direction.
Christian Nehme scored less than two minutes after No. 22 Centaurus had taken the lead and Spencer Wegner scored the eventual game-winner on a blast from 20 yards to put the No. 3 Indians into the Class 4A boys' soccer state semifinals with a 3-1 victory Saturday.
A sloppy first half and a poor turnover found the host Indians trailing the last 20-something seed in 4A 1-0.
That's when Nehme - forever dubbed Chicken when he was a baby by cousins of similar age who couldn't pronounce his name - landed a header in the back of the Warriors' goal to send the game into the break tied at 1.
"We were playing sloppy to start off with," Nehme said. "We gave away a sloppy goal. ... We lined up for that kick and I was like, all right, we need to get back into this. I came in not worrying about anything, just putting the ball in the net."
Cheyenne Mountain (15-3) will play No. 7 Evergreen - which defeated No. 2 Broomfield 4-0 - in the semifinals at Sports Authority Stadium in Parker at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Nehme's goal sparked the Indians. They looked like a completely different team in the second half. Or, they looked reminiscent of the one that earned that No. 3 seed.
"We needed a game changer," Nehme said. "We needed something to get back to our play. We didn't come out playing like Cheyenne."
More chances earned more set pieces. Those set pieces led to more goals.
When the ball bounced to Wegner early in the second half, the sophomore struck it true, hitting the upper corner of the net for just his second goal of the season. It was a result of the Indians getting back to their old ways.
"We came out really great (in the second half), started moving it around and playing Cheyenne soccer," Wegner said.
John Herd put the game out of reach on a penalty kick, and the Indians defense limited Centaurus (10-8) offensively the rest of the way.
Wegner and Indians coach Tomas Martinez said the team seemed nervous to start.
"I think I got my guys too pumped up in the first half to make a statement," said Martinez, who said the Indians' last trip to the semis came eight years ago. "So we looked pretty sloppy and pretty sporadic there."
Luckily, that first goal settled them down, thanks to Nehme, who wouldn't go by any other name.
"I love it," Nehme said. "No one else has a nickname like Chicken."