No, Hamadi Ali Abid doesn’t have a fan club, but maybe he should. The small, but vociferous crowd at Littleton Public Schools Stadium certainly voiced their approval of the junior forward during and after Littleton’s 2-1 victory over Cherokee Trail on Aug. 28, especially after Ali Abid scored the game-winning goal eight minutes into sudden-death overtime.
The speedy Ali Abid beat the defender before punching the game-winning goal into the lower right corner past Cherokee Trail goalkeeper Kamden Weis in the 88th minute.
“He’s just a robust forward. He can go one-on-one, he can shoot, and he’s the complete player. He plays defense. He scored a couple of goals and cleared a few opportunities for us. He’s a pleasure to have on the team,” Littleton head coach Pedja Vajzovic said.
Ali Abid, who also scored Littleton’s first goal in the 54th minute after an illegal touch by Weis set the Lions up for a free kick 16 yards from the net, will tell you though that he’s not the reason for Littleton’s early success. It was a team effort and a little bit of luck that pulled out this victory.
“We got lucky with that touch from the goalkeeper,” Ali Abid said. “(But) none of it was me. It was the whole team. It was great work from everyone.”
Maybe so, but his teammates know just how important he is to the team. Without him, the Lions probably wouldn’t have beaten Cherokee Trail.
“Hamadi is a fantastic striker. We’re really, really lucky to have him on our team,” senior tri-captain Sam Korff said. “He’s a clinical finisher. He’s really good at getting inside the defender and finishing the ball and he showed it today.”
The visiting Cougars jumped out early to a 1-0 lead after senior midfielder Bradley Homeyer scored in the game’s first five minutes. It was a bitter pill to swallow after Littleton didn’t trail at all two days earlier in a 5-1 season-opening win over Dakota Ridge.
“That was really tough to come back from. It was a real blow to our mental state,” Korff said.
Yet, the Lions eventually found a way.
Outplayed for much of the opening 30 minutes, Littleton turned the tide just before halftime and kept the offensive pressure moving forward for much of the remainder of the game, Vajzovic said.
“In the second half, I thought we played much better than them. Their goalkeeper kept them in the game,” he said. “I told (my team) that we deserved this win.”
But that wasn’t a given until Ali Abid found the net for a second time. And though Ali Abid has scored four goals in Littleton’s 2-0 start, he modestly defers his individual success to give credit for the team’s efforts.
“It’s seven goals in two games for the team. That’s more important than my four goals,” Ali Abid said.
Contact Michael Hicks at email@example.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 15.