Kenny Bristow, Wasatch Wave
On Friday afternoon, the Wasatch High School boy’s soccer team won its 12th game of the year, and second in a row by the mercy rule, as it demolished region foe Uintah, 8-0.
Two days earlier, Union visited Wasatch and suffered the same fate, an 8-0 beating at the hands of the black and gold.
The top-ranked Wasps remain unbeaten on the season and focused on running the table as they shoot for their second state championship in three years.
It was a beautiful day in Heber on Friday, and the Wasp faithful lined the hill along the Wasatch soccer field even though Uintah was a heavy underdog.
Head coach Dawain Wheatley said he never underestimates an opponent and knows his team has a giant target on its back. “As we come down to the final games in region, we will get tested like never before,” said Wheatley. “We still go to Judge and Park City, and Juan Diego is here for our last home game,” he added. “It definitely doesn’t get any easier from here.”
Wasatch, as it did two days earlier against visiting Union, finished the game before regulation time expired with an 8-0 advantage. “We respect all opponents,” said Wheatley. “But we understand the matchups and use the opportunities to learn some things about ourselves. Everyone knows what we can do we have to show them things they don’t know we can do.”
Uintah kept Wasatch from scoring until about 10 minutes into the game, when senior midfielder Luis Ramirez put the Wasps on the scoreboard 1-0. Ramirez added another goal shortly after, followed by Domey Espinoza’s fourth goal of the year.
State goal scoring leader Ben Powell put a ball in the net just before the two-minute mark to give Wasatch a 4-0 lead. Instead of coasting through the remainder of the half, junior Isaac Smedly scored two goals with a goal by Alex Espinoza, his 16th of the season, in between. That flurry put Wasatch up 7-0 at the half and had the home team looking to finish the game ahead of schedule quickly in the second half.
Powell was the catalyst with that eighth goal, his 18th on the year, halfway through the second period, and Wasatch had put the finishing touches on another dominating performance.
Smedley, who had his first two-goal game of the season and now has six total on the year, is pleased with the way his team is performing. “We’re playing pretty confident right now,” Smedley said. “I think it was important for us to get back in the flow of things — after spring break and before we get back into our tough region games,” added the junior. “Park City and Judge are always tough games for us. We want to be ready for them for sure.”
Kenny Bristow is the staff sports writer for the Wasatch Wave and contributes to the Deseret News high school coverage for the Wasatch region. Email: email@example.com. To contribute to DNews Preps for your area, enquire at 801.237.2143.