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Miners soccer shut out by Morgan

Two days after scoring four goals in the first half of a 4-1 victory over Uintah, the Park City High School girls’ soccer team’s offense couldn’t get anything to hit the back of the net on Thursday afternoon against Morgan.

Playing against a physical Trojan squad, the Miners had plenty of scoring opportunities, but just couldn’t capitalize, in what became a 1-0 loss the Miners’ first loss in Region 10 and their first loss to a 3A opponent this season.

The Park City defense was superb for most of the day, allowing Morgan only one real scoring opportunity. But the Trojans capitalized where the Miners could not. Park City coach Chip Cook said it’s frustrating to see a team win a game with just one good scoring opportunity.

"We got a little bit unlucky today," she said. "I thought we were the better team out there. We dominated possession in the second half. They only got one bouncing ball a lucky break and they capitalized on it. We were unable to capitalize on our opportunities."

Cook added that the Miners were a little bit frustrated with the physical play of the Trojans, who got away with a few jersey grabs in key spots. But, she added, the Miners still need to find a way to win games like that.

"Sometimes you get the calls and sometimes you don’t," she said. "But we’ve always said to our kids that you can’t leave the outcome of the game up to the officials. You have to dominate the game and you’ve got to win outright without relying on calls."

As the players made their way to the sideline after the final whistle, there were many dejected faces and frustrated yells. Cook said moments like those are what show a team’s true character, though.

"Soccer’s a brutal game like that," she said. "I can’t count how many times I’ve said that in all my years of coaching, but it is. Sometimes one [shot] is enough."

But, she added, the Miners are capable of bouncing back in a big way moving forward.

"This team is so connected," she said. "Every single one of these girls has so much heart and passion and pride. They’re connecting in ways I haven’t seen a team connect in a long time."

Though Thursday’s loss certainly hurt, Cook made sure to let her squad know that it’s all about what happens on Tuesday at Juan Diego.

"It’s not the end of the world," she said. "It makes Juan Diego a must-win, but Juan Diego was a must-win anyway, so it didn’t really matter about the outcome of today."

After beating Juan Diego 1-0 in Park City a couple weeks ago, the Miners still control their own destiny on Tuesday if they can defeat the Soaring Eagle in Draper. Cook said Park City is going to have to play its best game of the year if it wants to come out of the tough away game with a victory.

"It’s going to take a complete team effort and lots of heart," she said. "We need to get through that game and come out on the other end the victors."

An important change the Miners need to make, Cook said, is taking higher-quality shots on goal.

"We weren’t challenging the keeper enough," she said on Thursday. "We were getting down into their defensive third, but then we were hitting weak shots right to the keeper’s hands. We need to consistently challenge the keeper and make them come up with big saves."

If the Miners can do that on Tuesday at Juan Diego, Cook said a Region 10 title is well within reach. The title will be important for playoff seeding, making the road to the 3A state title game a little easier.

"I’d just like to clinch region so we can guarantee one home playoff match, and hopefully two," she said.

Tuesday’s game at Juan Diego is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. The Miners return home on Thursday to face Union on Senior Night, which will be held at 3:30 p.m. at Dozier Field.


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