Barely 10 minutes into this soccer match between Alta and Layton, as fans continued to stream in, the Hawks' Kevin Michels took a pass and headed it into the net.

But this was not the first goal, nor the second, and not even the third, but the fourth goal scored at the 29:30 mark to give Alta a 3-1 lead.

And the game was essentially over. At least, all the scoring was over, as the next 70 minutes turned into a defensive struggle and the Hawks won out.

Alta's leading scorer, Richard Harrison, had already done his damage. At the 36:42 mark, he opened the scoring with a swift right-legged swing from the right angle just outside the box which sailed past the Layton goalie and settled into the net.

Less than a minute later at 35:50, Harrison struck again. This time he faced off point blank with the Lancers' goalie deep in the box and slithered it on the ground past him.

"We shell-shocked them," said Alta coach Lee Mitchell, "and they had a big hole to dig out of."

But the Lancers wasted no time, as Alex Marietti scored three minutes later from the left angle to get Layton on the board.

After Michels' goal made it 3-1, the defenses settled in and Mitchell was particularly pleased with Nate Middleton.

"He was the man of the match," said Mitchell, "at least in my book." Mitchell said that when the ball went in the air down deep that Middleton did his job. "He cleared it out every single time," he said.

Harrison has uncanny scoring ability but he was quick to credit Sean Patterson, who assisted on both goals.

"He made two great passes," said Harrison.

The Hawks game plan was to come out firing. Said Harrison, "We talked about coming out strong at first."

And did they ever.

In the second half, Alta had the down slope and the wind at its back but never really took advantage, seemingly content with playing great defense. As for Layton, the Lancers looked like they were playing uphill and into the wind. A couple of corner kicks got the ball close to the net, but strong Alta defenders deflected it away, saving their goalie, Adam Frogley, from having to do much work.

The Hawks move on to play Viewmont on Tuesday.


E-mail: [email protected]