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High school girls soccer: Lone Peak fights back from early deficit, beats rival American Fork

SHARE High school girls soccer: Lone Peak fights back from early deficit, beats rival American Fork

Lone Peak’s Kate Denney (15) celebrates her goal against American Fork with teammates in American Fork on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2022.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

Lone Peak used a three-goal offensive flurry at the end of the first half to overcome an early 2-0 deficit Thursday afternoon against Region 4 rival American Fork as it rallied for the 4-3 victory.

With the win, top-ranked Lone Peak improved to 11-0 on the season and 5-0 in Region 4. American Fork, meanwhile, drops two games behind the Knights in the region standings at 3-2 as it missed out on a great chance to move into a first-place tie after the great start.

Even though it was a gritty win for Lone Peak, it certainly had sloppy moments.

In the opening three minutes the Knights gave up a quick goal scored by American Fork’s Sophie Eckery and then gave up another goal to Presley Ray in the 16th minute.

American Fork was certainly firing on all cylinders to start the game, but to Lone Peak’s credit they didn’t dwell on the early deficit.  Between the 31st minute and the end of the half Lone Peak scored three times to go ahead 3-2 by halftime.

The first Knight to strike was Solena Sellers in the 31st minute, followed by Elle Young in the 40th minute, with Young then assisting Kate Denney in first-half stoppage time.

“We knew going into it that it was going to be a tough game. We got down 0-2 and we needed to step it up,” said Young.

“We played with a lot of heart and trusted each other. Once we brought energy and began to play together is when things fell into place. The girls off the field had a big impact, they were loud and that gave us motivation. We pulled out the win with everyone’s help.”

Despite coughing up the lead so quickly at the end of the first half, the Cavemen didn’t back down and kept battling.

While the first half showcased the offensive ability of each team, the second half took on a much more defensive tone. Eventually, American Fork’s Ray broke through and scored again on a beautiful through pass from Faith Nyedegger evening up the score 3-3.

For a bit it seemed as though the two teams were destined for overtime, but in the 70th minute Brooklyn Dowdle found Samantha Sellers who scored the go-ahead goal, putting Lone Peak ahead 4-3.

“That was one tough intense game, but we didn’t expect any less from a rival game in region,” said Lone Peak coach Shantel Jolley.

“I give kudos to my girls for not putting their heads down and giving up after going down 2-0. It says a lot about the group of girls that I have this year and we’re happy to have found a way to pull that one out against a real good team.”

American Fork fought to the very end and had a couple good chances to even things up in the final few minutes but were unable to capitalize.

The win gives Lone Peak a two-game cushion in the region standings over American Fork, Pleasant Grove and Skyridge, who are all tied at 3-2.