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State soccer titles on line

Two games in two days— that's all it takes. The memories can last a lifetime, but the games are through in only 24 hours.

The teams with the best players, skills, fitness and— let's be honest — a few breaks will be taking home a state championship on Saturday. The pairings list some teams that were expected to be here, along with a few surprises, but at this point, there are four teams in three classifications vying for the titles.


Bingham is looking to become the first-ever repeat champion since the inception of a 5A classification. "We want to go out and show everyone that last year was not a fluke," said reigning MVP Alyssa VanderVeur earlier in the season. "We want to show them what Bingham soccer is all about."

The Miners' soccer team has been all about winning. VanderVeur and Jenny Ford have led the offense while Ali Griffin leads all keepers in shutouts.

Led by goalkeeper Nicole Kashanipour, Weber gives up less than two goals a game, but has only been able to score more than three goals one time this season. If the Warriors are able to find the back of the net, this can be a great game.

Alta is in the semifinals for the third-straight season and looking to avenge last year's disappointing loss.

The Hawks are led by all-state player Katie Larkin, but it is not a one-player team.

"I don't think I do anything more than anyone else," said Larkin after defeating Northridge. "I have a lot of good teammates out there."

Larkin leads the classification in goals scored, but Alta's defense is what drives the team. Goalies Lynzee Lee and Amanda Condie have split time in the net, and sweeper Alyssa Lowry has anchored a stout back line.

Davis reached the semis after stunning Region 3 co-champion Cottonwood, and the Darts are looking for another upset.

"As long as we keep playing as a team and not individuals, if we keep up the emotion and excitement we can play with anyone," said Davis coach Jenifer Gold.


Region 5 flexed its muscle in the playoffs. Boasting Bountiful, East and Woods Cross in the semis, the region showed where 4A's best soccer was played all year.

Defending champion Bountiful will get its third try at defeating Woods Cross this season. The Wildcats have been one of the state's highest scoring attacks. Led by the Robinson twins, Kelly and Abby, the team is a threat to blow out any opponent.

The Braves will rely on experience, and the play of Chelsie Cox in the field and Molli Merrill in the net to try to slow the Wildcat attack.

East would like to put losing last year's state-title game out of its mind by getting back to the finals. Katy Reineke is one of the state's leading midfielders, and Heather Joye has had a good season as keeper.

"I think we are just as good as last year's squad," said East coach Mike Kernodle. "We just need to continue the way we have."

Timpview surprised everyone but itself when it beat undefeated Timpanogos in the second-round. The Thunderbirds won eight of their last nine games, and have the experience Candice Clark and Jessica Harmon to rely on.


With three region champions advancing, this classification did not have many upsets. Park City knocked off region champion Ogden, but this was not a shock after the way the Miners have played. Midfielder Kelly Islieb is an MVP candidate, and Ellie Reid is a great goal scorer.

Lehi gave up an average of only 0.69 goals-a-game behind the goalkeeping of Beth Worthington, and the Pioneers scoring was led by Becky Pulham. Whichever team can dictate its style of play, whether it be the high-scoring Miners or the stingy defense of Lehi, will win this game.

Judge is looking to become a three-time champion. Dani Griffin and Jenn Pentesco will lead the Bulldogs in this quest.

"My team has heart," said head coach Wayne Voorhes of his team. "They know how to win."

Juan Diego has gone farther than ever before and the Vitacca sisters are a big reason why. Kara and Taryn have led the team in scoring all season. The Soaring Eagle hopes its can continue the turn-around and pull another upset.

Class 5A

At Cottonwood High School

Semifinals, today

Bingham (16-2-0) vs. Weber (11-4-3), 1 p.m.

Alta (16-2-0) vs. Davis (11-4-3), 3 p.m.

Championship game

2 p.m. Saturday

Class 4A

At Bonneville High School, Ogden

Semifinals, today

Bountiful (13-5-0) vs. Woods Cross (15-3-0), 2 p.m.

East (16-1-1) vs. Timpview (10-8-0), 4:15 p.m.

Championship game

2 p.m. Saturday

Class 3A

At St. Joseph High School, Ogden

Semifinals, today

Park City (13-3-1) vs. Lehi (14-4-0), 1 p.m.

Juan Diego (14-3-0) vs. Judge (15-2-1), 3 p.m.

Championship game

2 p.m. Saturday