Park City girls lacrosse begins run through state championships with romp over West Jordan
Miners advance to state quarterfinals with 20-2 victory
The Park City High School’s girls lacrosse team’s last state title was just three years ago, but for a program with the Miners’ level of success, that feels like an eternity. Park City fell short of a sixth consecutive title in 2019, and then the pandemic canceled their season after only one game last spring.
Heading into this year’s state tournament, the Miners are feeling the pressure to bring home the trophy. After a 15-0 regular season, Park City is the No. 1 seed in the Division A bracket, and the Miners are currently the 58th best team in the country, according to MaxPreps’ rankings.
On Tuesday, they were out for blood. Against the West Jordan Jaguars, they were the predators circling their prey.
The Miners were dominant from start to finish against West Jordan in a 20-2 win in the opening round of the Division A Championship. The win moves Park City into the quarterfinals, where they will have home-field advantage on Friday against the winner of Farmington versus Fremont.
“You know, we really wanted to come out and make a statement,” Park City coach Mikki Clayton said. “We have a great team this year, and, you know, we realize that we have a target on our back with being the No. 1number one seed. Everyone’s going to want to knock us off, so we just said we need to play our game, and that’s what they did today.”
It took just over a minute for Park City to score its first goal of the game when freshman Sophie Neff found the back of the net. The Miners scored on their first five shots of the game in under five minutes. Neff completed the hat trick just over six minutes into play to put Park City up 6-0.
Midfielder Kendall Keblish is one of the state’s top scorers, and she showed off her goal-scoring prowess in the first half. Keblish rifled home a pair of goals early before getting back on the scoresheet again midway through the first half to complete the hat trick. She then added another goal in the second half.
But it was junior Samantha Riely who was making her presence known all over the field. One of the state’s best playmakers, she went on a hot streak towards the end of the first half to score three goals in a row in the span of roughly 3 1/2 minutes and had another two goals in the second half while winning battles defensively and forcing turnovers.
“She just played awesome across the field,” Clayton said. “She had some great, great goals, she had a bunch of ground balls, she got the ball back on defense, she got the ball off draw controls, so she was kind of everywhere today.”
After the Miners took a 10-0 lead midway through the first half, the rest of the game was played with a running clock. Park City led 15-0 at halftime en route to the blowout.
That has been the story of the Miners’ season thus far. Park City entered Tuesday’s game outscoring its opponents 299-30, and the closest game the Miners have played all season was its first game against No. 3 Skyline, an 11-5 victory. Tuesday’s win was the 10th time this season that the Miners have scored at least 20 points.
“We have a really strong attack, a very experienced attack, and just there’s a lot of goal scorers across the board, which is awesome,” Clayton said.
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