By Tom Zulewski
Iron County Today
With a chance to stay home for at least the opening round of the 4A girls soccer playoffs, a big crowd turned out for the regular-season finale between Cedar and Dixie on Oct. 6.
For one team, a fortunate bounce was more than enough to get into the win column and avoid planning for a postseason road trip.
Jessica Vasquez scored off a rebound in the 49th minute, and Flyers keeper Mashaun Estridge made several clutch stops down the stretch as the Flyers held on for a tension-filled 1-0 win over the Lady Reds at Cedar on a warm afternoon that had minimal wind.
Dixie’s victory gave them a final Region 9 record of 8-2-2, the No. 2 seed for the opening round and a home matchup against Park City today. Cedar finished 8-4-0, saw its four-game winning streak snapped, and they have to travel as the No. 3 seed to play at Ogden, the No. 2 seed from Region 11.
“It was a bruising match up and down,” Dixie coach Sam Gibbs said. “Cedar played really, really well.”
The Lady Reds had the better of the ball possession, especially in the opening half, but couldn’t get a ball into the net past Estridge, who had to make 12 saves. Estridge was on her game in the closing seconds of both halves, making key stops that kept Cedar off the scoreboard.
“I told the girls ‘we have to be resilient,’” Cedar head coach Scott Kamachi said. “We’ve won state from fourth place before and played in the semifinals when we finished third.”
Cedar set themselves up for the shot at the second seed with a 2-1 overtime win on the road at Hurricane on Oct. 3. Ashley Jenkins netted the game-winner with less than a minute remaining in the first overtime period.
The Tigers were able to strike first, but Lauren Craft pulled the Lady Reds even with a goal in the seventh minute.
Parowan clinched the 2A South championship in its only game of the week Oct. 5 as they edged Beaver 2-1 at Valentine Park to finish with a 6-1-1 region record. The Rams trailed the Beavers 1-0 at the half, but Autumn Rogerson scored both goals in the final 40 minutes that secured the title and first-round playoff home game that will be played Oct. 16.
The Rams’ opponent will be the No. 4 seed from 2A North, with game time set for 4 p.m.
Canyon View dropped its final two games of the season, both by shutout. Pine View came away with a 2-0 victory Oct. 3, and Desert Hills posted a 3-0 win Friday.
The Falcons finished the year with a 1-10-1 record in Region 9 play.
Region 9 standings
Snow Canyon 9-3-0
Desert Hills 7-3-2
Canyon View 1-10-1
Pine View 1-11-0
2A South standings
North Sevier 0-8-0
4A state playoffs
Today’s games (Region 9 teams)
Cedar at Ogden, 4 p.m.
Desert Hills at Bonneville, 4 p.m.
Park City at Dixie, 4 p.m.
Juan Diego at Snow Canyon, 4 p.m.
2A state playoffs
Monday, Oct. 16
2A North No. 4 at Parowan, 4 p.m.