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West Valley City • With as many opportunities as both teams had, you'd figure Friday's boys' soccer game between Hunter and Taylorsville would be a high-scoring battle. The goalies, however, had other intentions.
Hunter's Justin Motzkes and Taylorsville's Kellar Sirstins each made countless saves to preserve the double-overtime, scoreless game.
"It's so much fun," Sirstins said. "You're the last line of defense. You either handle the pressure and it's fun at the end or you don't. It takes a certain breed, and both keepers showed they have it tonight."
Though the outcome was a tie, the Warriors had more reason to celebrate. Taylorsville (5-3-1 region, 7-4-3 overall) became the first Region 2 team to earn a point against the Wolverines (8-0-1, 12-1-2) in the standings. Hunter still has a chance to finish undefeated in region play next week at Viewmont.
"A point to me is a win," Taylorsville coach George Sirstins said. "Just because no one could get close to them and we did. My boys played with their hearts on their shirtsleeves. Both keepers did an excellent job."
Unlike some scoreless games where the action is limited, the Wolverines and Warriors gave their fans plenty of reason to cheer. A handful of shots clanged off the crossbar or posts, while both keepers dove to stop several shots. The action intensified in overtime.
"The goalies really did play a lot," Hunter coach Larry Garahana said. "They both got a lot of touches on the ball. Up until this game, [Motzkes] hadn't really been tested, and he did a good job. We had spurts of putting things together."
The Wolverines had perhaps the best scoring chance in overtime. Raul Cavazos shot the ball from point-blank range in the 83rd minute, but Sirstins saved it in the lower left corner of the goal. Earlier, a shot by Taylorsville's Edgar Estrada hit the right post, deflected off Motzkes and rolled out for a corner kick.
"I felt we didn't let up for 100 minutes," Coach Sirstins said. "They're our biggest rival, and we play each other hard. I'm just elated to take the point."
With the game time being moved to 7:30 p.m., along with it being senior night, Garahana was concerned with how the changes would affect his team.
"I really felt all the hoopla got them off guard and they didn't focus," Garahana said of his team. "But it could still be an undefeated season. They want to go undefeated and I'm not going to hold anyone back [next week]."
The Wolverines celebrated their first region championship in soccer since 2007 during halftime festivities. Hunter, which had won nine consecutive games, has allowed only eight goals all season, outscoring region opponents 26-5.