The Boys Division A semifinals get underway Wednesday night as Brighton travels to Charger Stadium at 5:00 pm MST in a game that will be live-broadcasted on Utah Lacrosse News.
Brighton is coming into the game on a 14-game winning streak, with their last loss being a five-goal deficit against Lake Oswego (OR) on March 24. Brighton started the year with two wins and six losses, but managed to rebound and go on a tear to get to this point in the season. It should be noted that four of those losses were to out-of-state opponents as Brighton’s only losses in-state this year were both one goal decisions to Park City and Juan Diego.
Brighton is led in scoring by Easton Albert, a UHSLL Division A First-Team All-State selection. Albert is averaging 3.82 PPG on the season, totaling 43 goals and 22 assists. Albert had three goals and an assist the last time these two teams played. Jake Nydeggar and Justus Peterson are close behind in points-per-game on the year, both averaging over 3 PPG. Peterson is a lethal finisher and strong dodger as evidenced by his 44 goals during the season.
The Brighton defense has been stout for the majority of the season, registering a 5.7 GAA in their 14-game win-streak. Goalkeepers Houston Kraenbuhl and Canyon Curtis have provided quality goaltending for the Bengals as both goalies have combined for a 57-percent save-percentage on the season.
This will be the second meeting between Brighton and Corner Canyon this year. Brighton walked-away with a 12-11 overtime victory against the Chargers back on April 28th.
Corner Canyon will try to avenge that loss in tomorrow’s matchup, but will have to do so without senior Jaden Kasteler who was lost earlier in the season to injury.
Leading the charge for the Chargers will be Zak Fankhauser, who has scored 37 goals and 36 assists for Corner Canyon this season. Another duel-threat to watch for is Jacob Simpson, who has tallied 37 goals and 31 assists in the 2018 campaign.
One thing to watch for will be Corner Canyon’s depth. Corner Canyon has lost a few players to injury, and has had to rely on other players stepping up. If Corner Canyon’s next men up can handle the pressure of the big stage and produce like they have been all season, they stand a good chance of taking the victory in this one. Facing that kind of adversity during the season could prove to be an advantage for the Chargers under the tough conditions of post-season play.
Corner Canyon’s only in-state losses this year have been to Brighton and Park City. The Miners are the No. 1 seed heading into the tournament, and will face the winner of the this matchup.