Grand Junction The third time was a charm.
Moffat County scored its third goal in as many games. But Friday's score was more than just a morale builder.
Amanda Brewer ripped a shot past Palisade goalkeeper Amelia Davis in the 22th minute for a 1-0 lead.Then, the Bulldogs defense, which had yet to show any stiffness, suddenly got nasty.
Palisade won the battle of shots on goal by a huge margin. Moffat County ended the night with just two shots, both in the first half, to Palisade's 16. But Imelda Hernandez was up to the challenge. The Bulldogs freshman keeper caught, pushed or slid away the assortment of shots on net Palisade zinged at the goalie.
The combination of the two freshmen's efforts gave Moffat County its first win of the year - and a mad dash by the team to the sidelines to reach their cellphones to share the news.
The final score had first-year coach Alegra Yager at a loss for words.
"I don't how to explain this," she said. "Physically, my girls did not look good, and this is our third (straight) game on the road with another one tomorrow morning. It was amazing to watch."
Brewer set the tone when she chased down a ball headed toward the left side of the penalty area from midfield. After gaining possession, Brewer had a step on Palisade defender Mandy Bruggerman and fired home the game winner past a diving Davis.
"We found her position. That's all it took. She did it, and she came through," Yager said of Brewer who moved to a forward spot after playing sweeper earlier this season.
Despite the early goal, Hernandez was kept busy all night. Palisade had 10 shots on goal in the first half. All of them came from outside the 18-yard line.
Hernandez preserved the shutout with her biggest save when she stopped Palisade's Hannah Hardin in the first minute of the second half.
"She's got a lot of heart for soccer, and I knew she'd come through," Yager said. "She's faced a lot of shots on goal this year and played an awesome game tonight."