The 6A girls lacrosse semifinals took place Tuesday at Westminster College, with No. 5 Mountain Ridge and No. 2 Lone Peak advancing to Thursday’s 6A state championship. Here’s a recap of both games.
Mountain Ridge 12, Farmington 7
It took a while for Mountain Ridge to find its stride this season, but it eventually did and is looking every bit the part of defending state champs.
The fifth-seed Sentinels took care of business against No. 1 seed Farmington 12-7 in the 6A semifinals at Westminster College on Tuesday, an outcome that never seemed in jeopardy as they controlled possession for much of the game.
The win was the ninth straight for Mountain Ridge, which advances into Thursday’s 6A state championship game at Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman at 3 p.m.
“We talked about staying hungry the entire game, making sure we’re not just playing for ourselves that we’re playing as a team, working together on the attack and in our transitions, communicating on defense and really just fighting for that ball no matter where it’s at,” said Mountain Ridge coach Angie Treasure.
The Sentinels jumped out to a quick 2-1 lead at the 18:37 mark of the first half, then proceeded to keep the Phoenix scoreless the rest of the half, taking a 6-1 lead into the break.
The closest Farmington got in the second half was a four-goal deficit as Mountain Ridge slowed the game down and was smart with its attack.
“We could hold it back and make them have to come pressure us when we’re on the attack, holding the possession, killing the clock, which we got to do a couple times when we had cards toward the end,” said Treasure.
Farmington cut the lead to 9-5 with 7:09 remaining, but Mountain Ridge responded with goals from Kiarra Clairin, Amelia Weller and Emmery Clark during the next 51⁄2 minutes to extend the lead to 12-5.
Farmington tacked on two more goals in the final 30 seconds, but ran out of time to build on that momentum.
Tessa Mortensen led Mountain Ridge in scoring with four goals, with Clark adding three and Clarin chipping in with two.
Clark missed the first six games of the season as she overcame an injury, and even when she returned she was cautiously worked back into the rotation.
Treasure said about the midway point of the season is when everything started to click for her team.
“We started a new attack once we started hitting region play, and I feel like that’s when we started to click together and to realize we’re so much stronger together. I think region play is when we really started setting our tone,” said Treasure.
She attributes a lot of that success to the qualities Clark brings every game.
“She has a way of helping the attack settle and work better together. Everyone looks up to her. She’s a strong athlete but she’s also a great teammate,” said Treasure.
Lone Peak 19, Bingham 9
In the final game of the regular season less than two weeks ago, Lone Peak lost to Bingham 15-13. Turns out it was the perfect gut check for the Knights.
In the rematch in the 6A semifinals at Westminster College on Tuesday, Lone Peak dominated the entire game, racing to an eight-goal lead by halftime and coasting from there for the 19-9 victory to advance to its first state title game.
“It was a really tough loss, but it really made them focus in a much more solid way the whole next week,” said Lone Peak coach Weslie Lundell, who said the team really honed in a few specifics in the practices ahead of the playoffs and that’s made all the difference.
Lundell said Lone Peak’s 16-7 win over Fremont in the quarterfinals and the semifinal win were the two best performances for the Knights this season.
Mickelle Cook was outstanding as she scored a season-high seven goals; Maddie Potvin added four more and Lauren Siri, Sadie Neuenschwander and Katrina Maddox each chipped in two apiece.
“McKelle Cook came up huge for us today. She’s a really solid person on our team and she usually does really well, so we knew she’d continue to do well, but she played huge along with many of our other players,” said Lundell.
Lone Peak goalie Ellie Fuller came up with some huge saves, especially early in the game, which allowed the Knights to slowly pull away at the other end.
Lone Peak led 6-4 midway through the first half, but it closed the half on a 6-0 run with Cook accounting for two of those goals.