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Highland Claims Spot in Play-in Game With Win Over West Jordan

Highland RamsWith the weather finally starting to stay warm, the Highland Rams hosted the West Jordan Jaguars Thursday afternoon at Sugarhouse Park in Salt Lake City. The game would determine which of the two teams moved on to the play-in game on May 5. Both teams played fairly evenly, but in the end it was Highland that took home the win, defeating the Jaguars 5-3.
Going into the first quarter each team was anxious to gain the upper hand quickly. This had a different effect on each teach. The Jaguars were excited to get the ball down the field, causing forced passes which turned into a struggle to clear the ball. Highland created plenty of shooting opportunities, but had a hard time putting their shots on target.
After several attempts by the Rams, Jacob Romney was able to convert for the first score of the game. The Rams did not score again in the first, but because of an intense, in-your-face Ram defense, West Jordan was held scoreless.
The tables turned in the second quarter. West Jordan really began to find their groove on offense and it paid off. Jaguar attackman Hunter Brown scored the team’s first goal. That goal was followed with another Jaguar goal. Highland’s off-target shooting kept them from scoring in the second quarter and the Jaguars had the lead going into the second half.
The third quarter was a reflection of the first. Highland took a lot of shots and West Jordan had trouble clearing the ball. Andrew Parkin brought the game back to a tie midway through the quarter. By the end of the quarter the Rams took back the lead with a goal by Nick Romney.
With the game so close, both teams had the chance to take the game away and move into playoff contention. By this point, West Jordan had figured out what was wrong on clears and were able to create more offensive opportunities. Highland was not willing to surrender possession easily, however. Keanu Netzler scored a goal to lift the Rams up to a two-point lead. That goal was followed by a second goal for Jacob Romney on an outside shot.
West Jordan still had a chance to come from being down three goals,  and they fought hard. Defender Brevan Shupe crossed the midline to score a coast-to-coast goal for the Jags. This lifted the team’s spirits, but unfortunately was not enough to make up the deficit. The Jaguars failed to score again and the Rams came out on top.
The win gives the Rams a chance to enter the ULA Boys D-II playoff bracket. They will first have to get past the Westlake Thunder in a play-in game on May 5. Beforehand, the Rams will play in their final season game against the Riverton Silverwolves on May 3. The Jaguars also have one game remaining against the Thunder on May 3.

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