No sooner had Alta High School claimed a 3-1 victory over Davis High and yet another state championship - this one the 4A soccer title - than the celebration began Friday evening at Hillcrest High School. First the players piled on one another, then the coaches, then the fans.

By now the Hawks had this celebration stuff down pat. But hadn't they had enough already?Apparently not. For Alta High students, who were released from school early to support their teams, it had been one long day of racing around the valley collecting state championship trophies, followed by big celebrations. First, Alta's softball team won the 4A championship, then the baseball team did the same. "The kids know what happened; they want to make it three," said soccer coach Lee Mitchell, shortly before his team went out and did just that, defeating Davis in large part because of two unlikely goals.

The Hawks, who had spent five years just trying to get in the state tournament, weren't about to blow the state championship game. Or were they?

The Hawks scored first when Shawn Thompson deflected Corey Hays' free kick into the corner of the net at the 23-minute mark. The Hawks controlled the remainder of the half, with Cody Lewis taking charge at midfield with his deft passing, goalie John Ragsdale continually picking off corner shots and forward Shane Jones sending Davis running for cover with his swift drives to the goal.

The second half was barely 10 seconds old when Alta scored again. The Dart fullbacks sent a careless kick back toward their goalie Brad Bolily for a kick upfield. At least that was the idea. Jones raced past two defenders to intercept the pass and scored to give the Hawks a 2-0 lead.

"We seemed to give up a little after that," said Davis coach Alan Porter. "That took a lot out of us."

But then Alta made a similarly careless blunder. Ragsdale was still celebrating a spectacular diving save he had made of Erik Emmons' free kick, when a teammate kicked the ball back to him for a goal kick. Before Ragsdale knew what was happening, Davis' Sam Adams raced past him and sent the ball into an open net to make it 2-1 at the 69-minute mark.

"I never saw him coming," said Ragsdale. "I was still excited for saving that penalty kick."

Matters got only worse for Alta moments later when Jones was given a red card - a free pass to the sidelines. Not only was Alta forced to play the last 10 minutes without its best player, but it was forced to play with only 10 players.

No matter, five minutes later, Ragsdale triggered the days' deciding play. Kicking into the wind from his own goal, he sent the ball three-quarters the way up the field, finding fullback John Carper in stride. Carper, sprinting away from two defenders, let the ball bounce once, dribbled it three times and scored - assist, the goalie.

"That's happened a couple of times this year," said Ragsdale. "That's because Carper is so fast."

For Davis, there was no shame in runner-up. After all, the Darts had rallied from a 3-5 start this season. For its part, Alta, which had been shut out of the state tournament for five years because of inter-region losses, this was its first state soccer championship, finally.

"From Day One our goal was the state championship and nothing less," said Mitchell.