SOUTH JORDAN — Preparations are complete.
Now it's time for the real battles to commence.
Bingham and Timpanogos both experienced fairly high highs and fairly low lows during the preseason, and soon they'll find out how they stack up in their respective regions.
The two 5A squads closed out their preseason schedules against one another Friday afternoon, and the result was a 1-0 overtime win for the second-ranked Miners.
It wasn't exactly a memorable performance by Bingham, but the squad did create a handful of outstanding scoring chances. And it won the game when senior Jace Maxfield converted a penalty kick in the sixth minute of overtime.
Up to that point, Bingham had largely been frustrated by wayward finishing and by Timpanogos goalie Christian Ledek.
The senior 'keeper made a number of fine saves to keep the score level, and Bingham coach Scott Maxfield praised him afterward. However, he quickly noted that his squad must improve its precision in front of goal.
"He was just fearless today," Maxfield said of Ledek. "But that's no excuse. We've got to find a way to put some points on the board and quit putting so much pressure on our defense to keep shutting everybody out."
The Miners hope to find someone who can finish when Region 3 play begins — they played two freshmen on top at one point Friday — but they've taken huge strides forward since a shocking 7-1 loss to Dixie in their season-opener.
Bingham notched a pair of 1-0 wins over Brighton and Alta a week ago, and it will look to build on that momentum in the regular season.
"They're getting better," said Maxfield.
On the other hand, Timpanogos will also look to build on a fairly productive preseason.
Interestingly, the Timberwolves have a 4-1 win over the same Dixie team that whacked Bingham. Also, they've beaten Timpview and Provo of Class 4A.
Timpanogos' lone setback — before Friday — had been a 3-0 loss to Springville.
"I think when you look at the history of the school, we've had a positive preseason," said co-head coach Paul Lydolph III. "But our expectations are higher than that."
Bingham begins its Region 3 schedule at Hunter next Tuesday, while Timpanogos hosts Lone Peak in Region 4 action.