On Wednesday night, the Bingham Miners girls lacrosse team secured a spot in the 2011 D-I State Championship game by beating the Olympus Titans 9 to 6.
“I was very proud of my team’s effort last night,” said Bingham Coach Eliza Hitz.Â “Both squads played a good, clean game, I thought.Â Our attacks and middies set up good rides and created turnovers, and our settled defense consistently pressured the ball and denied Olympus shot opportunities.Â We have been working all year on developing our passing transition game to create fast breaks, and I thought we did well moving the ball upfield and then finished the job with great shots. I was particularly proud of Kaitlin Peterson for her remarkable number of forced turnovers and ground balls on defense, of Morgan Judd for her dependability in transitioning the ball upfield, and of Nikki Ballou (our senior captain) for her awesome assists that produced several goals on attack.”
It was a drizzly evening at Judge Memorial Stadium, but that did not stop the Miners from doing all they could do to defeat the Titans.Â The game started out with back and forth goals by each team. Sierra Peterson from Bingham, and Sophie Janes from Olympus had goals early on.Â Niki Ballou and Morgan Judd also tallied goals for Bingham. While Judd also came up with some great interceptions in the midfield.Â Janae Miczo of Bingham slowed the momentum a little with a yellow card giving the Titans a one player up lead and a free position goal by Zoe Aldous.Â Taking the score to 3-2 for Bingham with 10:00 to go in the half.Â Olympus’ Makena White also received a yellow card for a check to the head.Â Binghams’ Olivia Winters got a quick goal,Â while Rachel Dieterich form Olympus also found the net.Â A few great saves by Olympus goalie Madison Simonich, followed by a Bingham goal by Brooke Tate, assisted by Sierra Peterson.Â And another Miner goal from Rachel Munk, taking the score at half-time to 6-3 Bingham.
Bingham started out strong in the second half with goals by Winters, Alicia Jones, Tate, two of the goals assisted by Niki Ballou. Olympus answered back with a goal from Shauntel Hyde, and two from Dieterich. Hyde had several more attempts at the open goal to no avail. Towards the end, it became a possession game of “keep away” and Olympus just could not gain possession.Â Even with their three goal run at the end, Olympus could not gain back the deficit and ultimately lost to the Miners 9-6.
Winters and Tate led the Miners with two goals each, while Ballou, Peterson, Judd, Munk and Jones also tallied goals for Bingham.Â Junior Annie VanValkenburg in goal.
For Olympus, Dieterich led with three goals, while Janes, Aldous, and Hyde each scored one.Â Sophomore Madison Simonich collected five saves.
Hitz noted, “Our greatest strength as a squad is our ability to play as a team; everyone works together and supports one another, rather than having one or two stars carry the rest of the team.Â As a squad, we have achieved remarkable things this year because we are so committed to playing as a team.Â We will carry this work ethic into the State Championship, where we will be challenged to maintain our intensity and play our hearts out from start to finish.”
Bingham will challenge Alta this Saturday at Park City’s Dozier Field at 4:00pm.