The Waterford Ravens took on the Herriman Mustangs Wednesday night at Juan Diego High School in Draper. The Ravens overtook the Mustangs, winning 7-5.
Coming out of the gates, both teams demonstrated excellent defense. Ground balls were forced and offense lost possession as the ball moved up and down the field with few shots on goal. At least three sticks were knocked clean out of the hands of their owners in the first quarter. Finally, with 5:01 on the clock, Waterford Midfielder David Lewis scored, assisted by attackmen Matthew West after picking up an excellent rebound.
Herriman answered back with 3:15 left in the quarter on a clear. Attackmen Matt Dykes passed the ball to midfielder Dillon Meyer who encountered the goalie one-on-one. Meyer faked shots and juked the goalie until he was able to find the top corner of the goal. Waterford scored again with just 24 seconds on the clock, putting them up 2-1 after one quarter.
The Ravens were able to hold the Mustangs scoreless in the second quarter, while scoring two goals of their own. Waterford Midfielder Benjamin White was frequently driving the ball from the top of the restraining box, outrunning his defender and shooting, but without much luck. Finally he was able to score midway through the second quarter. Midfielder Mahdia Sofla also scored a goal for the Ravens coming off a substitution and catching the Herriman defense off-guard. The half ended with Waterford up 4-1.
Throughout the first seven minutes of the third quarter, Herriman dominated possession of the ball and looked great with their passing, but were unable to score. Finally at the 4:58 mark the Mustangs scored as Waterford defense doubled the ball at the top of the restraining box. Herriman Midfielder Braxton Thompson then passed the ball to midfielder Taylor Brundage, who scored uncontested.
With 33 seconds left in the third, White scored again for the Ravens driving from midfield and faking a pass to trick the defender, leaving him open to score. Herriman quickly won the next face-off and midfielder Conner Merrill scored right away, leaving just 14 seconds on the clock. The third ended with Waterford up 5-3.
Early in the fourth, Herriman brought the score within one for a short time. Waterford struggled to convert on several fast breaks or great looks with an attackmen with his toes on the crease due to dropped passes. This went on throughout the quarter and the Ravens missed out on several potential extra goals. White was finally able to score again for Waterford off a ground ball near midfield at the 7:36 mark.
In the next 8 seconds Herriman Midfielder Ben Richard won the face-off, passed the ball to Merrill, who immediately passed it to attackmen Chantz Roberts for the goal. White scored his fourth and final goal of the game as he casually strolled in the top corner of the restraining box, catching his defender in a relaxed position. White exploded towards the goal, easily beating his defender and scoring. Herriman was unable to come back and score and Waterford took home the win.
“We had determination,” said Waterford Head Coach Dave Brattin. “We played Herriman earlier in the season and they beat us. Players set a goal to avenge that. We are not bigger, faster, stronger than 90 percent of teams that are playing. We have to play smart. We have gotten pretty good at keeping a team at bay when the time is right.”
Waterford will match up against the Mountain Crest Mustangs Saturday, May 19 to determine the 2012 Boys D-II Champion. Waterford was the No. 1 seed from the Salt Lake City Conference and has a record of 12-5. Mountain Crest came in as the No. 1 seed from the North Conference and have a record of 14-1.
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