PROVO — Even through attrition and realignment, some things never change. That can be said about Wasatch High School soccer. The Heber City school girls team was on a five-game winning streak and holding sole possession of first place in Region 8 when it traveled to Provo to face Timpview Tuesday night.
The Lady Wasps failed to redeem themselves, however, for an ugly 3-1 home loss to Timpview last month with a 1-0 letdown against the T-Birds under the lights.
In a game with a lot on the line that would shake up the standings in Region 8, especially with a Wasatch loss, neither squad could put together a series of offensive possessions to take total control of the contest.
Both goalkeepers — Daryl Kaufusi for the Lady T-Birds and Torri Bills for the visiting Wasps — held ground in net facing few shots as most of the game was locked up in the middle of the field.
“That was probably the difference for us,” Wasatch head coach Dawain Wheatley said. “We couldn’t get the ball to the outside enough. They are a bigger, more physical team, so just to battle in the midfield was not going to get it done for us tonight.”
The lone score of the game came on a breakaway in the 14th minute of the first half. Kesley Rumsey got through the Wasp backline and charged towards the goal. Bills attempted to time a block by coming out of the net and charging Rumsey, but the senior was able to make the goal, her second of the season.
Bills made several great saves during the contest, especially in the late going of the first period and the first half of the second. But the one-on-one breakaway was too tough to stop.
Wasatch looked as though it would make a game of it in the final 10 minutes, finally finding ways to keep the ball beyond midfield and within striking distance.
The Lady Wasps did get one opportunity on a free kick; Whitley Sargent struck it hard, but just high of the goal.
Sophomore striker Ella Ballstaedt, who is tied for the team lead in goals scored with three, was double-teamed most of the night and could not get anything going towards the net out of the corner, where she is usually a scoring threat.
By the time the Lady Wasps looked as though they had their opponent reeling a bit, time ran out on them and so did their hold on first place.
Timpview head coach Rob Dahl was pleased to get the win.
“We feel very fortunate to beat such a talented team; coach Wheatley is such a great coach and I have so much respect for hit. It feels really good to get this one," Dahl said.Comment on this story
“Our girls knew first place was on the line tonight, I’m proud of how hard we played. And to take both games from them feels really good for us. But there’s certainly opportunity for us to stumble, and we could see these guys again, so we know it’s not over.”
Wasatch entered the match fueled by a big win over Provo on Friday night, picking up its fifth in a row — all region victories. The Lady Wasps hadn’t lost since playing the Thunderbirds on their pitch back in August.
“We’ve been playing very well,” Wheatley said. “This is a disappointing loss, but we’ll learn from it and move forward. We all have the same schedule in this region and there aren’t any games off. We can definitely battle back from this one — and we will.”
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: firstname.lastname@example.org. To contribute to DNews Preps for your area, enquire at 801.237.2143.