ST. GEORGE — The Dixie Flyers keep winning. Right now that’s the only constant in Region 9 as Desert Hills stunned Pine View at Panther Stadium and Hurricane shocked Snow Canyon, cinching up the playoff race with just two weeks remaining in the regular season. Here’s a recap of Friday’s boys soccer action:
Desert Hills 4, Pine View 3 (F/2 OT)
What a roller coaster for the Thunder, who led 3-1 with less than five minutes to go in regulation. A rebound goal and a foul in the box that led to a penalty kick equalized the game and forced overtime. In the second OT, Pine View had a couple of shots at ending it off of corner kicks. But, like a flash, Desert Hills reversed the field and Kanon Heaton ended the game after a nifty pass from Blake Evans.
“I saw Blake get that ball and send it up with Kanon making that run,” DH coach Stuart Dewey said. “The two defenders missed it on the bounce and it just kind of landed right in his lap. And he puts it it. It was beautiful.”
It was an incredibly physical game with both teams having players carted off with injuries. Heaton laid prone on the field after the winning goal for several minutes as he was sandwiched a split-second after the game-ending kick.
“I saw the defenders crashing hard so I just took a quick rip and I scored,” Heaton said. “I guess. I hit the ground pretty hard.”
The tally was the second of the game for Kanon Heaton. The other two came from his cousin, Walker Heaton.
“We lost to them the first game of the season and we knew we gave that game away,” Walker Heaton said. “We knew we could get them this time.”
Kanon’s first goal came at the 26:07 mark of the first half and tied the game at 1-1. Pine View had taken an early lead on a Kalob Dudley goal on a smooth grounder across the face of the goal.
The Thunder took a 2-1 lead into halftime after Walker Heaton’s first tally, a little strike in front of the goal off a pass from Kanon that came with 5:59 to go in the first half.
Walker Heaton made it 3-1 less than two minutes into the second half as he pounded home a crossing pass. With 38:06 left in the game, Desert Hills was beginning to think the upset was going to be a reality.
It seemed more and more likely as the clock reached the five minute mark. But Pine View still had some fight left and Dudley struck again with 4:14 to play on a rebound goal. After his tally, Dudley, mindful of the short clock, grabbed the ball and sprinted to midfield to get the game going again.
The Panthers kept the pressure on and off a corner kick, a foul in the goalie box gave Pine View the chance it needed. Ethan Baer boomed the PK to the lower left part of the goal and sent the game to OT.
“It was very frustrating,” Dewey said. “It was one of those, like, oh my gosh, here it comes again. We got a little frantic there for a bit, but just continued to play hard. I thought we dominated those overtime periods and it was just a matter of time until we scored.”
Neither team scored in the first 10-minute overtime, though the Thunder had three quality shots on goal that were turned away by PV keeper Javy Gaona. The Panthers had a free kick from just 15 yards out with under 10 seconds to go that was blocked away by a defender, sending the contest into the second OT.
Hunter Spray nearly ended it for Desert Hills with 4:25 left from 20 yards out, missing by a foot or so to the right. Christian Cottle also had a solid strike for DH at the 3:40 mark that was just high.
After an offensive run-out by Pine View, the Thunder countered with Kanon Heaton winning the ball on a pass from Evans that landed perfectly in his lap. He got the shot away just before two defenders converged on him to give DH its fourth region win of the year.
The Thunder, 7-7-0 overall and 4-5-0 in region, really needed the win with Hurricane right behind them in the standings, especially since the Tigers pulled of their own upset Friday night. DH has 12 points, while Hurricane has 10 in that fight for fourth place and a playoff spot.
Pine View, 7-5-1 and 6-2-0, is still tied with Snow Canyon with 18 points. DH hosts Canyon View Tuesday while Pine View is at first-place Dixie.
Hurricane 2, Snow Canyon 0
With four games left, including three on the road, the Tigers desperately needed a home win Friday night and Kaden Jackson and the defense provided just that.
Jackson, the Hurricane goalkeeper, recorded his fourth shutout of the season and the 13th of his career as the Tigers stayed alive in the playoff hunt. Hurricane is two points behind D-Hills for fourth place. HHS is well ahead of sixth-place Canyon View, which has just six points.
Kyson Spendlove scored his sixth goal of the season and Max Guterez pounded home his second of the year as the Tigers improved to 5-5-2 overall and 3-4-1 in region.
Snow Canyon fell to 11-3-0 overall and 6-3-0 in region. The Warriors are tied with Pine View with 18 points. PV has one more game left than the SC. The Warriors next match is at Pine View Friday night. Hurricane is at Cedar Tuesday afternoon.
Dixie 2, Canyon View 0
After missing a couple of games with a concussion and its accompanying symptoms, Dixie keeper Ethan Poulton returned to the pitch in fine fashion with the clean sheet against the Falcons.
Dixie continues to roll in defense of last season’s state championship. With Pine View and Snow Canyon losing, the Flyers now have a seven-point lead on the field with 25 team points. PV and SC have 18.
It is shutout number three for the junior Poulton this season.
Dixie, 9-2-3 overall and 8-0-1 in region, has three region games left, starting with Tuesday’s home match vs. Pine View.
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