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No. 1 Bingham Defeats No. 4 Brighton to Advance to Semifinals

Kira Heiden - Bingham Girls Lacrosse

The No. 1 seeded Bingham Miners defeated the No. 4 Brighton Bengals on Friday afternoon in the Quarterfinals of the playoffs by the score of 13-6 in a tale of opposite halves.
The first half was full of typical playoff action with both teams scoring back and forth, tough defense, great passing and phenomenal goalie play. Brighton controlled the first draw and was able to take a good possession before Amy Johnston scored on a great pass from Courtney Brandon. Brighton won the next draw but Bingham force a turnover and took it to their end of the field before Brighton Goalie Taylor Hekking made a point-blank save to keep the Miners off the board. Hekking made several big saves in the following minutes to keep the game close. Bingham managed to score at the 19:35 mark when Alicia Jones leveled the score when she cut behind her defender and caught a pass from Rachael Munk. Bingham captured the lead two minutes later when Kristin Porter got her own rebound off a blocked shot then ran behind the crease and fed Munk who cut down the middle of the field, caught the pass and scored.

Kira Heiden - Bingham Girls Lacrosse
c/o David Jones
Hekking continued to shine for the Bengals, giving them the confidence they needed to stay close with the defending champs. Bingham was able to notch another goal on a free position opportunity that was converted by Morgan Judd. Brighton clawed back, scoring at the 11:23 and 8:06 marks to tie the game at 3. Both goals came from Brandon who was able to spin past her defender on the first goal and made a nice cut which led to a pass and shot on the second goal.
Brighton took the lead at the 5:50 mark when Gina Rafiti threw a pass to the middle of the field that was deflected right to Johnston who buried it over Bingham Goalie Kelly Fitzgerald. Hekking and the pipes continued to stand tall for Brighton, keeping the Bengals in the game. The Miners leveled at the 2:49 mark when Porter quick-sticked a feed on the crease into the goal. Bingham would regain the lead with 40 seconds left in the half when Kira Heiden scored her first goal of the game, giving Bingham a 5-4 lead at halftime.
The second half was one-sided with Bingham taking the reigns just 11 seconds into the half when Heiden won the opening draw, and took it to the cage on the fast break, finding Porter on the crease for the goal. The young Bengals couldn’t keep up with the experience of the Miners who reeled off 5 straight goals. Brighton pulled one back at the 10:40 mark but Bingham answered a minute later to make the score 12-5. Brighton would score again at 2:05 followed by the final goal at the 1:09 mark by Bingham to bring the final to 13-6.
“We knew they were going to come out strong,” said Bingham Head Coach Amy Erickson. “We wanted to come out stronger but Brighton did their job. They have some great players and it went smooth for them. At half, we reminded the girls about the inspirational story we told before the game and the lights came on in the second half.”
Kira Heiden stood out for the Miners in the second half after a rough first half of draws. After losing 6 out of 10 in the first half, Heiden won 10 of 11 in the second half which helped kick the Miners into full gear.
“The first half was rough for Kira, but she completely turned her game around and was the difference in the second half,” said Erickson.
Porter led the Miners with 4 goals and 2 assists. Jones finished with 3 goals and 2 assists.
“Kristin Porter did awesome today. She is coming off an injury so it was good to see her and Alicia Jones play really well for us today,” said Erickson.
Hekking had 12 saves in the first half and 4 in the second half for the Bengals. Fitzgerald finished with 1 save for the Miners.
“Our entire defense did well,” said Erickson. “They struggled in the first half with communication but fixed it in the second half which was good to see.”
Bingham will take on the No. 2 seeded Park City Miners in a rematch of the 2012 Girls D-I Championship game that Bingham won 11-10. The Battle of the Miners will be on Tuesday in the semifinals at Park City High School.

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