Miners boys lacrosse topples Knights 14-8
The Park City High School boys lacrosse team defeated Lone Peak 14-8 on Wednesday at Dozier Field in what Miners coach Brian Bilzi said was the team’s most balanced game of the season.
Lone Peak lost a war of attrition after gaining an early lead, lagging behind Park City bit by bit until the game was out of reach.
The Miners trailed the Knights 4-3 in the first quarter, then the Miners outscored them 4-1 in the second to put the home team ahead 7-5 at halftime. The Miners earned a cushion in the third quarter, outscoring the Knights 4-2 for a four-point lead going into the fourth quarter, when they outscored the Knights again 3-1.
Bilzi commended his team’s offensive performance for enabling a strong defense.
“I think when your offense wears the (opposing) defense out like that they are going to start making mistakes in every facet of the game,” Bilzi said. “Good offense breeds good defense and if they can give us that much time, we will be OK defensively.”
Junior Dylan Bauer and sophomore Cole Ward, both attackmen, scored the majority of the Miners’ goals (5 for Bauer, 4 for Ward) in a shooting clinic.
The Miners spent a good deal of the game circling the Knights goal, cycling the ball from attackman to attackman. The Miners scored often and consistently. By the end of the game, Lone Peak’s offense mainly consisted of counter-attacks.
“We just came out fighting from the beginning, which helped because we usually come out a little bit flat,” Bauer said. “We were the first to strike, and we just got it going.”
Along with Buaer and Ward, the goal scorers included senior midfielder Toby Burke (2), junior faceoff man Sam Levine (1), sophomore midfielder Kirby Baynes (1), and sophomore midfielder Tyler Vendetti (1). Senior goalkeeper Griff Riggs finished the game with five saves in 13 shots for a .385 save percentage.
There were also several players whose contributions were harder to measure but who nonetheless made a significant impact on the game, like Levine’s contribution at faceoffs, where he consistently delivered in the second half, including one faceoff that he took directly to goal, and junior short stick midfielder Brady Baumann’s efforts to clear the ball, which usually involved a head fake, a quick change of direction and a burst of speed to split the defense.
“It’s hell on wheels,” Bauer said of Baumann’s playing style. “He’s nuts.”
Bilzi said Baumann has “his hair on fire all the time” and described him as “relentless.”
The Miners are sitting atop the Utah Division 1 lacrosse rankings, having lost just one game this season – 13-9 to No. 2 Olympus in an away game on April 5. Their next closest game was their season opener at Herriman on March 14, which Park City won 7-6. The Miners have won most of their other games handily. But even those slight stumbles raise eyebrows on a team that holds the state title.
“It’s been an up-and-down season trying to figure out who the hell we are after losing those seniors from last season,” Bilzi said. “I think we are finally starting to figure it out. It’s going to be a battle every game here on out, hopefully through the state championship.”
The Miners will finish out the regular season on Wednesday when it faces No. 3 Brighton at home at 7:30 p.m. The playoffs begin May 7 at Dozier at 6 p.m.
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Dave Hanscom announced last month he was retiring as volunteer race director of the Wasatch Citizens Series after 30 years in the position.