SPRINGVILLE Round one of the battle between the two Region 7 soccer heavyweights went to Springville by a matter of inches.
In the fourth minute of overtime, Natalie Young squeezed her shot in between the cross bar and the goalkeeper's outstretched arm, giving the Red Devils a 1-0 win over Orem on Thursday.
Springville became only the second team this year to put a goal in on Orem, ending the Tigers' 14-game winning streak, and took an early one-game lead at the top of the region standings.
Both sides played to a stone-cold draw for 80 minutes, and it took a perfectly placed shot to finally put a goal on the scoreboard.
"It could have gone either way," said Springville coach Ryan Swanson. "Both teams played hard and we were fortunate to get the win."
In the 84th minute, the Red Devils found some space down the middle and Kim Stratford played through for Alexis Eaton.
Eaton saw Young coming unmarked down the right side and played the ball in her direction. The senior forward took the shot quickly from just inside the box, and it sailed high inside the near post and out of reach of the keeper.
"I saw it and I took it," said Young. "I thought it was going to go over but it was in. ... That's huge."
The closest to scoring that anyone had come before that was a couple of bounces off the woodwork in either half.
In the 19th minute, Orem's Kristen Mella found some space and let a shot go from the top of the box, but it hit the crossbar and came straight down on the goal line.
In the dying minutes of the second half, Springville was similarly denied.
Young had an open header during a scramble in the goal box, but it hit the post and bounced away.
A follow-up touch from a tight angle hit the same post before the defense could clear.
The Red Devils were frustrated by the Tigers' compact defense and couldn't get their passes to connect once they got deep in the attacking area.
Orem had more shot attempts, but couldn't get most of them on target, and most of them were from a distance.
"We had our opportunities," said Tigers coach Ed Louder. "(Springville) did a good job today. We have to capitalize on our opportunities."
It's early enough in the region schedule that the championship race is far from decided, and Springville knows Orem will be looking for revenge when the teams meet again next month.
"It's going to be a huge battle when we play again," said Swanson. "We've got to play them again at their place."