When the final whistle blew, I just can’t even express it. Brighton is a heck of team. They are a heck of a team, but we never give up. Never give up. That has been us the whole season. —Viewmont's Preston Pitt
WOODS CROSS — How do you pass the time during a rain delay?
For the Viewmont Vikings, the answer to that question was Sour Patch Kids.
While waiting out a rain delay Tuesday afternoon at Woods Cross High School, the Vikings used those goodies to stay on top of their game, as well as pass the time.
“During the delay we ate some Sour Patch Kids,” Viewmont senior Preston Pitt said. “To get our energy up.”
To be fair, the Vikings also stretched and discussed game strategy.
“We kept telling each other to keep it up,” said Pitt. “We didn’t want to lose our focus, so we did some stretching and ate some sour patch kids.”
“We just tried to stay focused on the game,” added Viking goalkeeper Isaac Roy. “Just talked about what we could do better.”
The truth is, they needed every edge they could get.
The Vikings were in the middle of a heated 5A semifinal contest with the top-ranked Brighton Bengals, tied 0-0, with a trip to Rio Tinto Stadium and a berth in the state championship game on the line.
Perhaps it was the Sour Patch Kids, or maybe it was the stretches, but thanks to a last-minute score by Pitt, Viewmont defeated Brighton 1-0.
“When the final whistle blew, I just can’t even express it,” said Pitt. “Brighton is a heck of team. They are a heck of a team, but we never give up. Never give up. That has been us the whole season.
“Nobody believes in us. Our clan of brothers are the only ones who believe in us, and we never gave up.”
That belief showed from the opening kick to the final whistle. Viewmont, despite its sub-.500 record and No. 3 seed in the state tournament, believed it could take down the Bengals.
The Vikings believed despite an opening 10 minutes where Brighton was the superior team.
They believed despite the Bengals outshooting them at a near 10-1 clip (Viewmont had just two shots on goal the entire contest, while Brighton was near double-digits in the first half alone).
They even believed while waiting out the game-delaying thunderstorm.
“We knew Preston would get a goal,” said Roy. “He always has.”
Before the game-winning score by Pitt, Roy and the Viewmont defense were the reason the Vikings even remained in the contest.
Roy personally made five or six game-saving stops, while his back line and midfield did their part.
“Brighton attacks really well. They are a really good attacking team. We had to stay connected as a defense,” said Roy. “If they broke us down, then it was up to me, but I trust my defense enough that they’ll do what they need to do. If I need to, I’ll make that save, but it was a whole team effort today. It was not just me.”
It was all Pitt on the game-deciding score. The forward outraced a pair of Bengal defenders, corralled the ball on an incredibly slick surface and beat Brighton goalkeeper Harrison Nuttall in what seemed like one fluid motion.
“The ball was in the air and I knew since it had been rainy that the field was slippery,” said Pitt. “My team, they call me “The Dog,” because I am always after it, and I was just going to go. There were three minutes left, and you get to play at Rio Tinto if you get a goal.
“I just went full-out, the ball bounced my way and I tapped it in.”
That tap was all it took. The Vikings were headed to the state championship game.
Viewmont will battle the defending champion Alta Hawks for the 5A state title Thursday at 7 p.m.