Miners fall short un rivalry game
Bitter rivals Park City and Judge Memorial took to the brand new turf field on a beautiful night in Salt Lake on Wednesday and immediately shattered the serenity with hits, grunts and the sounds of battle, in a gritty 14-9 loss for the Miners.
"We really played with intensity tonight," said Park city head coach Ryan Sheaffer.
Although the Miners finished six points down, the score didn’t tell the full story. In total, the Miners won 13 out of 14 face-offs and began the game matching the Bulldogs goal for goal. At halftime, they were only down 7-4.
"We set the tone, especially in the first half," Sheaffer said.
At the start of the third quarter, The Miners were slapped with a penalty that put them a man down. Judge took advantage of the situation and scored the first goal of the half. At that point, the momentum seemed to shift to the Bulldogs’ favor as they began to pull away from the Miners.
"It was one of those games where you could feel the momentum shift," Sheaffer said.
In the fourth quarter, Park City regained some of its momentum with more possessions, strong passing and numerous shots on goal, but it wasn’t enough.
"In the fourth we got it back, but it was too little, too late," Sheaffer said.
The Miners struggled defensively throughout the game, trying to figure out how the slow the surging Bulldogs. Still, Park City’s goalie Shurtleff made 17 saves on a whopping 32 shots by the Bulldogs.
"I’m not quite sure what’s going on defensively," Sheaffer said. "It wasn’t one of our best games, defensively, but Corey made a lot of great saves."
The Miners were unable to capitalize on a few possessions, which Sheaffer says will have to be remedied immediately before the final game of the regular season against West on Friday.
"We missed some passes that cost us a lot," Sheaffer said. "We missed a lot of opportunities that we couldn’t convert on."
The Miners did convert many times, though. Erik Hughes logged three goals and one assist, Ryan Emerson had two goals and one assist and Tyler Scott and Jason Hornek had two goals apiece.
Sheaffer was pleased with the overall effort of Miners against one of the top teams in the state boasting six strong scorers. He also knew that with the rivalry, both teams would come out with intensity.
The Miners won a Monday night game at Bonneville, so the game that was scheduled for Friday was a must-win to send them to the playoffs.
The Park City Police Department continues to investigate a series of vehicle burglaries in the overnight hours between Monday and Tuesday, indicating most of the cases were on the same street in Old Town.