There's nothing better on a cold night than a heated rivalry.
After Friday night's boys soccer game between Ironwood Ridge and Canyon del Oro, it's as warm as ever.
The host Nighthawks outlasted the Dorados 1-0 for their first victory over CDO in coach Sean Eyde's five years with the program.
"It's been a lot of pain for us. I don't think there's a bigger thing for boys soccer. Never actually having done it, it's been a long process actually getting these guys to believe they could do it," Eyde said.
Junior Ryan Bristow scored from close range in the 39th minute for the only goal in the Nighthawks' fourth straight win.
"I saw the ball coming over, and my eyes just lit up," Bristow said. "All I was trying to do was get a shot on goal. Once I scored, it was one of the best feelings I've ever had."
Despite being down at the half, CDO kept attacking the goal until the final tick.
"Second half was evenly matched," CDO coach Eddie Autz said. "We tried to put as much pressure on them as we could. Toward the end especially. Credit to their keeper. He had a lot of good saves at the end."
The Nighthawks defense was able to post its third shutout of the season, even without senior defender Julian Figueroa, whose season is likely over after injuring his ankle Thursday night in practice.
"I told them if we possess the ball, we're going to limit their threat on the counterattack," Eyde said. "From what I've seen, they've been a very dangerous team when you turn the ball over."
The two schools meet again Jan. 22 at CDO.
"It's going to be big. It's going to be on our home field," said Autz.
But the Nighthawks are quite familiar with CDO's field, having played most of their home games there this season because of poor field conditions at I-Ridge.
"It's been awhile since we've come out here and lost. It's going to be anyone's game," Autz said.