COMMENTARY — Last season, the Desert Hills boys soccer team made the state playoffs, but didn’t last long after being bounced 4-1 by semifinalist Wasatch. This year’s team, led by speedy Chase Thompson and Justin Brinkerhoff, hopes to make a better showing come mid-May.
Already, the Thunder look sharp, having racked up a 3-0-1 record. Thompson has five goals and Brinkerhoff has four as Desert Hills has looked spectacular at times. On the season’s opening weekend the Thunder outscored Grand and Uintah by a combined 18-0 count.
Last weekend wasn’t as dominating, but DH did earn a 1-1 draw with Park City and beat perennial 2A powerhouse St. Joseph 2-0.
The true test will be tomorrow night as the Thunder play at 3A defending-champ Dixie to open Region 9 play.
Speaking of whom, the Flyers are a surprising 2-2 so far, having dropped matches to a non-playoff team from a year ago in Maple Mountain (2-1) and to 5A Alta, also 2-1.
Cedar is the only other unbeaten team in preseason, but has yet to play any stiff competition. The Redmen are off Tuesday night and open region Friday at home vs. Canyon View.
Hurricane is 3-1 with the lone loss coming to Park City. The Tigers were the two seed from region 9 last season. Pine View and Snow Canyon have both opened the preseason 0-3. Hurricane plays at Pine View Tuesday night. The Warriors play at Canyon View.
In softball, Snow Canyon, Dixie and Hurricane have all started hot. The Lady Warriors are 3-0, having beaten up on Springville (4-3), 5A Fremont (9-0) and Spring Valley (Nev.) 9-3. Ace pitcher Brytni Gurney is already 3-0 in the start of what should be a huge year for her.
Dixie got in some games against the big boys, defeating three 5A schools. The Lady Flyers got wins against Clearfield (9-0), Brighton (5-4) and West (11-3). Christa DeKorver is 2-0 and Summer Simkins has three doubles for Dixie.
Hurricane’s two wins came against Parowan (8-3) and Kanab (19-0).
In baseball, Dixie and Desert Hills were both perfect over the weekend. The Flyers outscored their three opponents in winning the Donny Pymm-Pizza Hut Classic. Dixie got ace pitching from Anthony Bauman in a 10-0 win over Tooele, from Braxton Ipson in a 10-1 win over Bear River and from Trevor Cox in a 7-0 win over Wasatch.
The Thunder scored 32 runs in their three wins. DH beat Rancho, Nev., 12-4, with Braiden Irvin doubling and tripling in the game. They beat the top-ranked 4A team, Maple Mountain, 8-6, and then defeated 5A West Jordan in the DH Invitational Championship Games 12-3. Kaleb Caplin had three doubles in the 20-hit party for the Thunder.
Hurricane got two victories last weekend, though the Tigers did take a loss and suffered a sister-kisser, a rarity in baseball, a tie. Playing in Mesquite, Hurricane beat Enterprise 5-1, then took a 7-7 tie with Moapa Valley in a game that was stopped due to a time limit. The Tigers then dropped a 6-2 decision to Hunter before closing the weekend out right with a 5-1 win over home-standing Virgin Valley. Easton Jolley has a double and a triple for Hurricane in the young season.
The defending-state champion Snow Canyon Warriors opened the season 2-2, dropping a pair to Nevada schools Cimarron (3-1) and Foothill (12-5). SC did get wins over Syracuse (7-1) and Herriman (9-3). Chandler Day abnd Brendan Truman are hitting the ball well early for the Warriors.
Cedar is 2-2 and Canyon View, which won the region last season, is 1-2. Pine View really struggled with the weather and a change in venues and was able to complete just one full game, a 13-3 loss to Lone Peak.
As far as the upcoming schedule, there are dozens of baseball, softball and soccer games scheduled in St. George for this coming weekend and Mother Nature seems to be in a better mood with the weather looking to be sunny and in the 70s.
Look for a full schedule right here in STGnews.com sports tomorrow.
Monday Rundown is a weekly column written by STGnews sports editor Andy Griffin. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
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