The Park City Miners finished their regular season with a 10-9 over Brighton, clinching the No. 1 seed in the North conference and completing an undefeated season.
Park City had most of the possession to begin the game, but Brighton scored first when Tiffiny Wallace scored on a great pass from Nici Boutwell. The Miners answered with their own goal a minute later when Haley Adelman cut down the middle and quick-sticked the feed from Hannah Hyatt. Hyatt and Adelman reversed roles for the next Park City goal to take a 2-1 lead. Brighton would tie the game at 2 when Wallace saw Amy Johnston wide open and Johnston slotted it home for the goal. Park City would add two more goals, one by Katy Miele and one by McKenna Tychsen, to take a 4-2 lead. Gina Rafiti pulled a goal back for the Bengals but Park City answered right back with a goal by Danielle Lecher. Brighton would capitalize on a Park City turnover, take it the distance using several great passes and eventually find Maddy Doty who slotted it home on the fast break to make the score 5-4 for Park City. The Miners would add a fast break goal of their own before halftime when Miele found Tychsen who was able to slot it home.
In the second half, Park City went on a four goal run that lasted until the 14:10 mark. Brighton was able to get their fifth goal when Rafiti found the back of the net on an extra-man opportunity. The Bengals then used a free position goal by Bergan McArdle to make the score 10-6 for the Miners. The next Brighton goal started on the defensive end when Bengal Goalie Taylor Hekking made a free position save, cleared the ball to McArdle who then took it the distance, drew the defense and dished to Chelsea Owens who was able to get the goal. Brighton would add another goal at the 3:30 and 2:18 marks to make the score 10-9. All the momentum was in favor of the Bengals until a Brighton yellow card allowed Park City to put the game on ice and by going into a hold offense, fending off the Brighton run and taking home the key victory.
“We talked about draw controls, executing on offense and communicating,” said Park City Head Coach Amy Hafets. “I felt like we did all of those things well. We made sure we were taking smart possessions on the offensive end and it paid off. I’m really proud of how we executed those three things.”
The Miners were led by Hyatt who had 3 goals and 3 assists. Tychsen finished with 3 goals while Lecher had 2 goals and 1 assist. Adelman had 1 goal and 2 assists and Miele finished with a goal and an assist. Park City won 11 of 21 draws. Brighton had eight players register at least one point. McArdle had 1 goal and 3 assists while Johnston had 2 goals and an assist. Wallace finished with 1 goal and 2 assists. Hekking had 5 saves.
“This year we are really going to focus on taking the playoffs one game at a time,” said Hafets. “We have really tried to just focus on game and take it game by game. The girls have the experience of going into the playoffs and they know what it feels like to walk off the field without a championship so we don’t need to motivate them so now we just focus on the next game.”
Park City will face Bingham and Brighton will take on rival Alta in the quarterfinals of the 2014 ULA Girls D-I Playoffs that begin on Friday, May 9.