Thursday night at BYU, Bingham did as well as any team has done this season against Riverton’s potent offense, defeating the Silverwolves 3-1 in the first game of the best of three 6A softball championship series.

The Silverwolves had been held to one run on just two different occasions this season before Thursday.

“Both teams are great teams and both teams played really well,” longtime Bingham head coach Mikki Jackson said. “That’s two very evenly matched teams and so what can you have …other than relief and excitement (to win).”

The Region 2 schools both cruised to the title series, setting up another showdown between programs very familiar with each other. Riverton and Bingham had met twice this season prior to Thursday’s matchup, with the Silverwolves topping the Miners on both occasions en route to the region championship.

The Miners were determined to get a different result Thursday.

“We’re definitely excited,” Bingham junior pitcher Brecka Larson said. “We’ve been working pretty hard to beat them, so it’s nice to finally make it happen.”

Larson pitched a masterful game to help the Miners accomplish that goal. She seemed to get stronger as the night wore on and finished with nine strikeouts while giving up just four hits.

“I felt like I just stayed in my rhythm,” the junior ace said with her arm wrapped in ice following her scorching performance. “I just made sure I was doing everything the same every time so I could get that pitch good.”

Larson pitched all seven innings for Bingham, playing a pivotal role in its victory.

“Brecka was great on the mound,” Jackson said. “Before the game, I felt a different demeanor from her. … There was a focus in her. …(the Silverwolves) are big hitters, and to hold off a great team like that, she obviously was doing some great stuff.”

The Miners scored two runs in the first inning, taking advantage of some self-inflicted wounds by the Silverwolves. The South Jordan school had one hit in the inning but drew three walks and capitalized on a Riverton error in what proved to be the difference in the game.

When asked about how big that fast start was for her team, Jackson said, “It says, ‘We’re OK.’ … (It) doesn’t mean in seven innings you’re not going to have to battle, but it just gives you that, ‘We’re not going to (fight) an uphill battle the whole way.’”

Riverton was the team facing an uphill battle and only could muster one run in the first inning before getting stifled the rest of the game. Bingham would add another run in the sixth, making things seem insurmountable for a Silverwolves squad that had no answer for Larson.

With the victory, the 6A defending champs find themselves one win away from a repeat.

“We still have another game to play,” Larson said. “It’s not over yet, so we need to finish strong.”

The Miners will have to do so when the teams meet again at BYU in Game 2 of their series beginning at 1:30 p.m. Friday. A third and final game will be played in the evening if necessary.