AMERICAN FORK — In a battle for Region 4 supremacy, it was Riverton that walked away with a hard-fought 2-1 victory over American Fork Tuesday afternoon.
“We have a lot of work to do, but I’m glad we got the win and the girls worked hard today,” said Riverton coach Paul Moizer.
The Silverwolves struck early after being awarded a penalty kick just minutes into the match.
Brinli Dillon sent a dangerous pass through the top of the box to the waiting feet of Hailey Skolmoski, who took a few dribbles before being fouled in the box.
Skolmoski calmly sent the penalty into the back of the net to put the visitors up 1-0, but not before American Fork goalkeeper Kenzie Jorgensen got a fingertip on the attempt.
It was Skolmoski’s 10th goal of the season.
“That’s just the way Hailey is,” said Moizer. “She’s ready to pounce on any ball that comes through. She’s quick and she’s got a nose for the goal.”
American Fork nearly found the equalizer minutes later on the counterattack.
Kelsey Cook connected with Lizzy Newman, who found herself alone behind the Riverton defense. Newman took a few dribbles alone into the box, but a sliding Julia Westwood deflected the shot.
The score line didn't hold for longer than five minutes, when American Fork sophomore Brooklyn Vogelsberg equalized with her first goal of the season.
Skolmoski nearly created the second goal of the match for Riverton after keeping possession along the left wing and into the box. However, her attempt was eventually thwarted after American Fork managed to clear the ball from the attacking third.
Aubrey Searle gave the home team its best look at taking the lead in the first half, but her attempt from distance bounced off the crossbar with some help from Riverton 'keeper Whitney Wood.
Wood was tested again just before the half when McKenzie Nebeker had a couple of attempts on goal blocked away by the Riverton 'keeper before sending the final shot over the goal.
American Fork controlled most of the possession to start the second half, but it was Riverton that had the first attempt on goal from Kirsten Spencer. The Silverwolves also had the first yellow card of the match when Kennedy Hibbard was shown yellow after her foul on Kennedy Jex in the attacking third.
The ensuing free kick sailed past the Riverton 'keeper, but a few deflections ended the fruition of a beautiful free kick into the box.
Kassidy Dibb put the first American Fork shot on goal in the second half, but Riverton 'keeper Camryn Colebrook managed to collect the attempt.
Twenty minutes into the second half, it was Skolmoski again for her second of the match and 11th of the season for Riverton to put the visitors up 2-1.
“We’re playing well as a team right now. Without my team I wouldn’t be anything,” said Skolmoski.
Skolmoski’s second goal moved her into second place statewide among individual goalscorers with 11.
“I just play soccer. That’s all that matters,” said Skolmoski after taking questions about being a leading goalscorer in the state. “It doesn’t matter what my ranking is. What matters is that my team is winning and doing well.”
Destri Palmer almost delivered another goal for the Silverwolves, but her attempt near post was punched away out of bounds and into the side netting by Jorgensen.
American Fork’s final attempt on goal was nearly the equalizer.
Audrey Searle delivered a free kick from 30 yards out on frame that bounced out of the waiting arms of Colebrook. American Fork freshman Hannah Fox collected the ball, but the Riverton defense and Colebrook thwarted her attempt on goal.
“They put us under a lot of pressure, and we didn’t pass well under that pressure so we need to work on that,” said Moizer. “But overall I thought the second half was better than the first. It was a scrappy game, and we’ll move on.”
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