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Sandy • History was made on both sides of the pitch in Saturday's Class 2A girls' soccer final.
With a 1-0 victory over Maeser Prep, Millard took home its first girls' soccer gold trophy to Fillmore, where the Eagles have a storied athletic tradition.
Maeser, a nine-year-old charter school located in Lindon, also accomplished some firsts. Until this year, the Lions had never won a region championship in any sport, and this marked the first time the school had played in a state championship game.
Millard used a goal in the first 10 minutes of the game by Anna Camp and a superb performance by goalkeeper McKenna Rowell to take home the gold.
"It was nice to get it so early," said Camp of her goal from about eight feet out. "It was kind of a fake pass and then nice and easy in. I was hoping we could get more in. It was kind of nerve-wracking only being ahead by one. It's always good to make history."
Rowell, who guards the goal with an aggressive style as she goes out to the meet the ball, faced tremendous pressure in the final 20 minutes.
Her stop of a breakaway by Maeser's Sophie Cannon with 6:33 left might have been the play of the game.
"That keeper came out and made the best save I've seen from any goalie," said Lions coach Dustin Simmons. "That was the play of the season."
Rowell said Millard coach Dale Josse taught her that style.
"I knew I had to block the goal and rely on my team when I came out," she said. "I came out pretty confident. My coach wants me coming out as a sweeper keeper. It's part of my game plan. That's why I play out that far."
Josse had nothing but praise for his keeper, who recorded her 11th shutout of the season.
"She is a superstar," he said. "She has no fear. She will go after anything, anywhere. That's what makes her such a key part of her team. It's what makes her so awesome."
The Millard coach said he didn't expect as much pressure as Maeser displayed in the second half.
"They stepped it up and kept the ball out of our hands," said Josse. "Maeser is a phenomenal team. I couldn't be prouder of my girls for holding off such a tough team."
Maeser showed up well in its first real appearance on Utah high school sports' big stage. The charter school brought a boisterous cheering section and was in the game the entire way.
"They played as hard as they could," said Simmons, seconds after telling his team to look out on the Rio Tinto pitch and savor the moment. "There was nothing left in the tank."
R Anna Camp scores the game's only goal to give Millard its first state girls' soccer championship.
• McKenna Rowell records her 11th shutout of the season.
• Maeser Prep finishes a season in which it played in the school's first state title game in any sport and won its first region title in any sport.