ARVADA — Ralston Valley junior Cooper Hineline revived the Mustangs’ boys soccer season that seemed to be fading away Tuesday night at the North Area Athletic Complex.

Hineline had a goal and assist late in the Class 5A second-round playoff game at NAAC to allow the No. 2-seeded Mustangs a 2-1 overtime victory to advance to the state quarterfinals Saturday, Nov. 4, at Englewood High School.

“The character that they showed. The resilience they showed, and of course it’s Cooper,” Ralston Valley coach John Doody said of the Mustangs’ leading goal scorer. “I think he missed some chances and maybe would be frustrated by his performance, but he just finds a way.”

Doody said that he felt the Mustangs played their best half of the season in the opening 40 minutes against No. 15 Boulder, but just couldn’t find the back of the net. The Panthers (9-5-3 record) took a 1-0 lead on a goal by sophomore Mickel Mackey in the 55th minute.

Photo by Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Public Schools

Boulder held the lead with less than 2 minutes remaining in regulation-time. However, Hineline wouldn’t let the Mustangs go quietly into the Halloween night, scoring the game-tying goal with 1:28 to play.

“I knew the time was running out fast. Just trying to get one more last shot on goal and see if it goes in,” Hineline said of his mentality in the final minutes with Ralston Valley trailing. “I was able to get the defenders out of the way and get an opening.”

Hineline came up big again early in the first 15-minute overtime period. He rifled a centering pass to junior Hunter Byrne in the 7th minute of the overtime session. Byrne got his head on the ball and past Boulder senior goalie Tyler Dove for the game-winner.

“It was about time. I’ve been on a dry streak for a little bit,” said Byrne, who hadn’t scored in the previous nine games. “Overtime, golden goal. That’s all I can say. It’s special.”

Byrne redeemed himself after missing some great scoring chances in the opening round last week where the Mustangs (15-0-2) also had to survive a 2-1 overtime victory against No. 21 Denver South.

“Last few games he (Byrne) has missed some shots, but I’ve been telling him in practice that it’s going to come,” Hineline said. “I still trust him and I’m going to give him that ball 10 out of 10 times.”

The come-from-behind win moves Ralston Valley into the quarterfinals against No. 7 Broomfield. The Eagles also had a 2-1 overtime win Tuesday night. Broomfield edged No. 10 Fossil Ridge.

“I think there is just a tremendous amount of quality this year in high school boys soccer,” Doody said. “We are just going to get ready for Saturday, put our heads down and keep working toward our goal.”

CHSAA will release times of the four 5A quarterfinal games at Englewood High School later this week. Ralston Valley hopes to avoid another overtime scare for the third straight postseason game.

“We need to start putting some goals away in the first and second halves,” Byrne admitted as the Mustangs head into the quarterfinals. “We need to seal that win early. Overtime is stressful. Overtime is stressful.”