OREM — Timpanogos came out firing Tuesday afternoon against Mountain View with five hard shots on goal in the first five minutes. The ball left the Bruins' backfield only once during that opening stretch where the T-wolves had several dangerous opportunities, the best of which was a crossing shot by Samantha Brady from inside the box that missed by inches.
Despite its struggle for possession early on, Orem still managed to strike first on a through ball from Mallory Ringer that surprised Timpanogos' backfield. Paige Young seized the opportunity and raced past the defense for a one-on-one with keeper Mia Barlow that she played perfectly, side-stepping the goalie to put the ball in the corner net.
After the defensive lapse, the T-wolves buckled down and exercised their will for most of the first half. With 25 minutes left, Brady passed downfield to Tess Donaldson who made a sharp cut outside the box toward the deep corner and launched a breathtaking shot that soared over the keeper into the side net, just inside the post.
Timpanogos pulled ahead 2-1 with six minutes remaining in the half. Hallie Fernandez found Brady on the outside corner of the box where Brady pulled a quick 180 with the ball and chipped an arcing shot over the keeper to the opposite post.
The last goal of the game happened in the first 30 seconds of the second half. Aspyn Farrer threaded a perfect through ball to the corner of the box, between the center back and left wing, finding a streaking Capri Eady in stride. After one touch, Eady fired a crossing shot over the keeper to the upper net.
Outside of that opening strike, Orem found its rhythm in the second half and played evenly with the T-wolves, each team making offensive runs that were eventually snuffed out by great defensive stops. Young and Emily Youngquist, in particular, had several threatening strikes for Orem.
Keeper Katrina Gardner played the second half in goal and made several saves for Timpanogos in her first action since suffering a concussion in the game at Skyridge. Emma Fry led the backfield with another outstanding game.
Late in the game, Ashton Beck had the next best chance to score for the T-wolves on a deep drive from the wing. She won the outside edge and turned toward center goal but couldn't connect with Brady or Donaldson in the middle for the putaway.
With only three games left in the regular season, Timpanogos holds a slim lead over Skyridge for the last playoff spot from Region 7. Its next game is against Timpview on Sept. 27.
Ben Hutchins is an identity management professional and chapter president of Utah Valley Legends in the League of Utah Writers. He has degrees from Brigham Young University and Syracuse University. EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org