ST. GEORGE – Two matches, two ties and two points for the two teams. Dixie and Snow Canyon recorded a dead-even draw for the second time this season Friday night. The one point for each team allowed Desert Hills, which beat Pine View, to pull into second place, a point ahead of the Flyers and two behind the Warriors.
Here the recap:
Dixie 1, Snow Canyon 1 (F/2OT)
Dixie scored around the 20 minute mark in the first half, but Snow Canyon matched it with just under eight minutes left in the match.
Snow Canyon head coach Marc Wittwer was content with the way his team battled back, but he was upset with the first half.
“Not our best game, but we didn’t give up,” he said. “(In the first half) they were just playing tight, they weren’t loose. They were a little negative with each other. A little frustrating, but that’s how it is.”
Dixie head coach Burt Myers expects tough matches every time against the Warriors.
“We’re a good team, they’re a good team. We’re intense, they’re intense. They train hard, we train hard. It’s going to be that way for a long time,” he said. “We’re both playing hard against each other.”
Jose “Tauri” Morales scored the first goal on a free kick in the first half.
“They lined up on it, and one guy went across the ball, when Cristian (Chavez) stepped the ball, everybody moved and Tauri hit a missile and the goalkeeper was blinded because his wall moved. He was over one edge of the wall, and the wall blinded him, and that’s why he got that one,” Myers said.
Snow Canyon came out tough in the second half and forced the issue by holding possession and putting pressure on the Dixie defense. SC’s Richard Vichi finally found the back of the net on a blast from about 25-yards out after a throw-in bounced around in the keeper’s box before being cleared to him. He blasted it in the left corner.
“We came into it and our heads weren’t in it all the way, we were kind of stressing — over stressing,” SC’s Kolton Barber said. “We played like it was the last two minutes (of the game) the whole first half. We were just driving balls in, just playing very direct. In the second half, we came out a little more calm, found some feet, found some good passes and we were able to put one in. The intensity was up.”
There were plenty of athletes that saw yellow from the referees. A yellow card entails there was some type of hard foul, but the referee wasn’t afraid of showing off that yellow card throughout the game.
“There was a lot of hard play, but I think both teams respect each other,” Myers said. “I don’t think there was any malice, but there was a lot of stuff. Of course, as coaches, we’re trying to get our way, and they’re trying to get their way, and I think the referees did a fine job because it was physical, it was fast and it was a hard game to referee.”
Both teams had many chances to score in the second half. Snow Canyon thought the game was won twice, but both shots were called off. The first one, there was a jumble in the box, the keeper went down and the referee called a foul before the ball rolled into the goal. The second one, the player was offside and got past the keeper as the referee blew his whistle.
“It was a very difficult game. We knew it was going to be tough, we gave it all we got,” Dixie’s Cristian Chavez said. “My teammates motivate me to do better every time. I just want to fight for them and have their backs every game and give my all.”
Snow Canyon will play Desert Hills next, possibly for the region title as Snow Canyon now leads Desert Hills by two points for the No. 1 spot. That match is set for Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at Snow Canyon.
“Region championship, hopefully, Tuesday. We’ll be ready. At this point of the season, the boys know what to do. They’ll be up for it,” Wittwer said.
Dixie dropped to third with the draw, but could jump Desert Hills if the Thunder draw or lose to SC. The Flyers could also tie with SC if the Thunder win that game, all of this as long as Dixie wins its next match against Hurricane. That match is set for Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at Dixie High.
“They’ve got a tough team, we’ve just gotta work on our defense, it’s going to be a tough game,” Chavez said.
Desert Hills 6, Pine View 0
Desert Hills is now at 18 points, while Snow Canyon has 20 points, and Dixie has 17.
The Thunder’s Kelton Holt recorded a hat trick (three goals), while Bruce Nelson recorded the shutout.
DH’s Ben Simister, Bridger Nelson and Bryant McCoy also scored a goal each in the blowout win.
Desert Hills plays for a chance to take over first place at Snow Canyon Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.
Pine View will try to fend off Cedar, which is looking to take over that fourth seed in the playoffs. The match is at Panther Stadium Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.
REGION 9 SOCCER STANDINGS
(team, region, points, overall)
Snow Canyon 6-0-2 (20) 10-2-2
Desert Hills 6-2-0 (18) 10-4-0
Dixie 5-1-2 (17) 9-2-2
Pine View 2-6-0 (6) 3-10-0
Hurricane 1-6-1 (4) 3-8-1
Cedar 1-6-1 (4) 3-11-1
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