PCHS girls’ soccer takes down tough region foe
September 16, 2016
Though it's still early in the Region 10 season, the Park City High School girls' soccer team knew how important Thursday afternoon's match against Stansbury was.
The Stallions were the team that gave the Miners their biggest challenge in 2015. Though Park City ended up winning the region title, Stansbury was on the Miners' heels every step of the way.
On Thursday at the North 40 fields, Park City took a 3-1 lead at halftime and managed to maintain that advantage through the second half to preserve a 3-1 victory.
Park City Coach Chip Cook said she was proud of the way the Miners challenged for every ball and stayed sharp mentally.
"Every game in region matters," she said. "I was pleased with a lot of our play, but I was more excited about our composure. It got pretty chippy and super contentious later in the game on both sides but we held it together and were able to keep the win."
As the Miners head toward the 3A playoffs, Cook said games like Thursday's are great for confidence.
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"These are the games where you have to have the best preparation," she said. "We have to take advantage of games like this to get better as a team as we get ready for playoffs."
Junior Casey Crawford started the scoring with a goal off an assist from senior Jessica DiCaprio. DiCaprio also set up the second goal, finding senior Bailey Hoglin on a corner kick, which Hoglin headed past the Stansbury goalkeeper. Park City's final goal came from senior Cali Keizer off a through-ball from Crawford.
Park City Assistant Coach Patty McAllister highlighted a couple of players who helped the Miners stay aggressive in the second half instead of sitting back and letting the Stallions dictate the pace of the game.
"There were a couple of players who don't necessarily stand out, but they do things right and keep the play moving," she said. "One of them was Casey Crawford. She helps create a lot of opportunities on the attack. Having players like Evie Edwards running in behind is what allowed us to keep building momentum instead of feeling like we were on our heels."
Defensively, the Miners continued to improve, McAllister added.
"You can see [sophomore goalie] Hannah [Pimentel]'s confidence growing," she said. "She held a pretty high line today, which I think helped us under pressure. It's just about the positioning of all of them and playing as a unit instead of individuals. I think they're all on the same page, so it looks good and makes everything else easy."
Cook added that having a senior leader like Hoglin on the back line helps some of the younger players shine.
"She's a tremendous leader," Cook said. "With Mackenna Doilney, who's just a freshman, it's reassuring for her to have a little bit more freedom to use her skills and speed with the confidence that Bailey is back there supporting her."
Moving forward, Cook said she'll be looking for the Miners to increase their level of play. She said it's important not to become complacent during the region season.
"We're looking for better possession, quality possession," she said. "We're looking for not necessarily the easy ball that's not very sophisticated tactically, but one step above that — particularly in the final third."
McAllister added that the Miners have flashes of brilliance in almost every game, but she wants to see those big-time moments more frequently.
"There are some things that they can do more often," she said. "It's just training their brains to be completely tuned in for the full 80 minutes so they can catch the other team sleeping."
Park City's next match is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 20, against Grantsville. The game is set to kick off at 3:30 p.m. at the North 40 fields.