PCHS girls’ soccer falls to Lehi | ParkRecord.com

PCHS girls’ soccer falls to Lehi

Tuesday afternoon’s game between the Park City High School girls’ soccer team and Lehi got off to a fast start for the Miners.

Early in the first half, Park City earned a corner kick. Senior Erin McNeely played the ball short to a teammate, who returned the ball to her, where she attempted a shot. Thanks to the strong winds on Tuesday, the shot was able to bend around the Lehi keeper, giving Park City a 1-0 lead.

However, the lead was to be short-lived for the Miners, as Lehi scored to make it 1-1 at halftime. To start the second half, Park City controlled possession and had several quality scoring opportunities, but couldn’t find the back of the net. After one Park City shot, Lehi quickly regained possession, went the length of the field and scored to take a 2-1 lead.

As Park City tried to equalize, Lehi scored again on a counter-attack to put the game out of reach at 3-1.

Park City Coach Chip Cook said she liked the offensive mindset the Miners had on Tuesday, but wants to see a quicker transition back to defense in the future.

"It was just one of those things where we didn’t recover quickly enough or mark tightly enough to successfully defend the counter-attack," she said. "It was a breakdown of recovery more than anything. We’re trying to dial that in."

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Despite the loss to 5A Lehi, Cook said she saw plenty of positives from 3A Park City.

"I think we did some really good things," she said. "They worked hard. I don’t think they gave up. It’s frustrating — you create a lot of opportunities and then you get countered and scored upon. We created a lot of opportunities and had a lot of shots on net. I like that we were shooting, I just wish the opportunities were a bit more dangerous. A lot of the shots were pretty easy for the keeper to handle. As they start getting more confidence offensively, then there will be more dangerous opportunities."

Cook said she was proud of the way the team handled the corner kick early in the game, showcasing some offensive creativity.

"We’ve been working a little bit on our corners," she said. "They made the decision to switch it up to a bit of a different type of corner and it clearly was the absolute right choice. I like to see those on-the-fly, tactical soccer decisions being made by them. Ultimately, it’s their decision in the course of the game."

Though Park City only has a record of 1-4-1 on the season, Cook said she’s seen a lot of growth from the players during the tough preseason schedule that has consisted entirely of 4A and 5A schools.

"We had a great win against Judge," she said. "They’re improving. Right now, it’s a lot of different kids who play for different teams in the offseason coming together and forming one team and getting used to the way the others play and the way we coach. They are really talented and have a ton of potential. We’re pleased with what we’re seeing. There were a couple breakdowns today that we need to fix, obviously, but in general, we’re super pleased with the growth we’ve seen in the preseason."

Park City was scheduled to host Highland on Friday afternoon, after this issue went to press. The Miners’ next home game is set for Tuesday, Sept. 8, against Bountiful at 3:30 p.m. at the North 40 fields.