Corner Canyon Beats Cherry Creek, Top 5 Players to Play HS Lacrosse in Utah
Issue 85 - Utah takes down Mercer, Park City Girls remain on top
Good morning lacrosse fans! Thank you for taking time out of your day for the Utah Lax Report!
Before we begin, I saw an email from Bob Imhoff, the IMLAX ref assignor and they are looking for more officials to join the ranks. As the sport grows in numbers, so does the need for refs! You control your schedule. You get paid. You get exercise and it is fun. If you’re interested, please reach out to Bob → email@example.com
As a reminder, the fine folks at Tribal West are offering 10% off your online order using the code TRIBAL2022 on tribalwest.com. You can order online and pick it up in-store!
Armchair Lacrosse Coach: Top 5 Players to Ever Play HS Lacrosse in Utah
This is a continuation of last week where Brad answered your questions!
Q: Top 5 players to ever play high school lacrosse in Utah?
A: This is the kind of question that can get dicey in the local lacrosse media verse. With that in mind, I reached out to some of the most knowledgeable (and nostalgic) folks in the community for their opinions and a few things became apparent. 1) stay focused on boys because I know nothing about women’s lacrosse and 2) frame the question as “top five players ever to come out of Utah (born and bred) taking into account the collegiate body of work”. All that said, it is still tough and I’m sure we/I missed a bunch. I very much look forward to your opinions.
Note: This list may include individuals and small groups of players where appropriate.
No. 1 Cole “Bubba” Fairman
The story isn’t so much his Utah high school lacrosse performance and legacy but more about his absolute ROCKET SHIP to notoriety outside of Utah in the summer of 2015. Those who remember him as a boy and know his family knew he was special early on but I am not sure anyone knew the extent. After making a verbal commitment to Coach Sowell and the Navy Midshipmen early in 2015, Bub’s went on to have one the most defining summer performances that anyone can remember. A reasonably known commodity in recruiting circles after his season at the Calverton School in Maryland (quick shout out to Brian Frates for making that happen), Fairman took the lacrosse world by storm as a member of the Under Armour Underclass West team with countless YouTube-worthy plays which quickly shot him to the top of most boards as the No. 1 recruit in the nation. After choosing to attend the University of Maryland, he has gone on to be a 4-year starter (3 on the first line midfield drawing the pole) and a 2-time captain on one the best teams in the nation year in and year out. His career stat line features 11 hat tricks, 27 multi-point games, 20 multi-goal games and a third-team All American nod in 2019. After a one-goal heartbreaker in the NCAA National Championship in 2021 against Virginia and a commanding performance by the Terps on March 19 in the rematch, the story is far from finished for Bubba in his final year and beyond. To Be Continued…
No. 2 Matt Maher/Kyle Fiat
Matt Maher played lacrosse at Bingham as a close defenseman and LSM in the early 2000s and chose to attend the University of Utah and play club lacrosse for Coach Mason Goodhand who was the head coach at the time. It only took a short amount of time for everyone to notice that Matt was a cut above the rest athletically. At this same time, the growth of NCAA Men’s Lacrosse had made its way to Northern California as a new D-II men’s lacrosse program had recently formed at Notre Dame De Namur and many of the top players in the MCLA West were exploring their options and this list included Matt. Another player in the Utah program had made the jump to NDNU and Matt asked Coach Goodhand for his opinion on his options. Goodhand told him to hold tight while he made a few calls. Coach G had grown up a mile away from Towson University in Towson, Maryland and had become friendly with the legendary Tony Seaman over the years as he led the Tigers program. Coach G decided to put together a package containing a VHS tape of Matt Maher leaving people in his dust as ran up the field on a fast break and sent it to Coach Seaman. As the story goes, Coach Seaman offered a favor to a friend and said he would take a look at Matt as a walk-on if he attended school but assumed it would go nowhere having no idea they even played lacrosse in the Western high desert. Well, Matt showed up on Day 1 of fall ball and proceeded to start every game remaining in his 3 years of eligibility, making it to the NCAA tournament in 2005 starting alongside fellow Utahn Kyle Fiat.
Kyle Fiat played Attack at Olympus in the very early 2000s as well but was known more for his ridiculous athleticism as a wide receiver on the football field. After a football injury ended his aspirations in football, Kyle chose to play club lacrosse at Utah State. One spring day after hanging 6 goals on Coach Goodhands Utah defense, Kyle approached Coach G and said he’d heard about Matt Maher and wondered if Coach G might be interested in helping him find a home in the NCAA. As the story goes, Mase basically called Tony Seaman, who picked up on the first ring, and before he could get Kyle's name out of his mouth, he said “please have him call me right away” as Matt had made quite the impression. Again, Kyle showed up on Day 1 of fall and proceeded to start every game for the Tigers from there on out with his two years of remaining eligibility. Kyle went on to play professional indoor lacrosse for the Philadelphia Wings, was a member of Team USA in the 2007 World Indoor Championship and was even drafted 12th overall by the Washington Bayhawks in the 2007 MLL supplemental draft.
My reasoning for having Bubba as No. 1 is pretty bulletproof considering his full body of work at the top of the collegiate men’s lacrosse food chain. My reasoning for having Matt Maher and Kyle Fiat at No. 2 is a little more complicated and biased. These two guys were true pioneers (along with Mark Tschaggeny to a lesser extent at UMBC) for the Utah Lacrosse Community. Not only were they the first, born and bred Utah lacrosse players to make the jump to the NCAA D-I level, but they were very productive and successful at that level. Kyle was also Utah’s first Profession player and it's an even bigger deal that he represented the USA. Fiat even appeared on the cover the US Lacrosse Magazine in 2005 and was part of an article about the Western Influence in the game. Nowadays Utah bred players are competing at all levels of the NCAA and seeing ‘Utah’ on a roster could be considered commonplace, but in 2003 seeing a player with UT next to his name on a top collegiate roster was extremely, extremely rare. Like 2 out of 2000 rare. Also, I think it's important that our lacrosse community know about its history and the people that helped pave the way. No. 3 through No. 5 coming next week so stay tuned and put your guess in the comments!
Boys High School
As always, our polls are brought to you by Salty Lacrosse.
No. 1 Corner Canyon - The lone game of the week for the Chargers was a big one as it put the state of Utah on its back, drove 6 hours to Battle Mountain High School in Colorado, beat Cherry Creek, 10-9, then drove 6 hours back home. The Chargers trailed the entire game except for being tied at 2 early on and of course when they took the lead late in the fourth quarter. The key to victory was the Corner Canyon defense in the fourth quarter as they shut out Cherry Creek. Face-offs were split evenly between the teams while Mason Quick had 3 goals and 3 assists. Jon King added 3 goals and an assist. Goalie Ayden Santi had 13 saves.
This win was surely the best win for a Utah high school team against an out-of-state opponent and one that the Chargers and lacrosse fans in Utah will not forget. The beautiful thing is that Corner Canyon will head to Southern California in two weeks to take on two great teams in Mater Dei and Corona del Mar. In the meantime, region games against Pleasant Grove and Westlake will take place this week.
No. 2 Olympus - Last week was a great week for the Titans to prove they belong in the No. 2 spot, and that’s exactly what they did. On Wednesday, Olympus hosted No. 6 Alta and opened the game with an 8-0 lead after the first quarter. The final ended up being 15-6 but it was total domination by the Titans. Then they took to the road on Friday and played No. 9 Green Canyon who they beat 14-2. No rest for the weary as Oly hosts No. 4 Mountain Ridge on Tuesday followed by an away game at Spanish Fork on Thursday.
No. 3 American Fork - The Cavemen played one game this week, a 13-12 overtime thriller against No. 5 Park City. Tate Fisher scored the game-winning goal for American Fork who trailed 12-9 with three minutes left. American Fork opens region play this week against No. 7 Lone Peak on Tuesday and Pleasant Grove on Thursday.
No. 4 Mountain Ridge - I interviewed Mountain Ridge Head Coach Trent Bangert on Thursday. You can listen to it here. The Sentinels beat West Jordan and Copper Hills last week by a combined score of 39-10. A tough challenge awaits on Tuesday as Mountain Ridge heads to No. 2 Olympus followed by Bingham on Thursday.
No. 5 Park City - It was an interesting week for the Miners who beat Bountiful on Tuesday, 14-8, but trailed 5-4 at half. Then the Miners traveled to No. 3 American Fork and lost, 13-12, in overtime. The Miners have a tough week as it will take on No. 9 Green Canyon on Wednesday then head to Colorado for a showdown against Valor Christian and Cherry Creek. on Friday and Saturday respectively.
No. 6 Alta - The Hawks went for the back-to-back-to-back approach this week and left with a 2-1 record. On Tuesday, Alta beat Timpview, 15-7, lost to No. 2 Olympus, 15-6, on Wednesday then beat Jordan, 16-6, on Thursday. Games against Lehi and Orem await the Hawks this week.
No. 7 Lone Peak - The Knights beat Springville, 23-0, on Tuesday then edged out a pesky East squad, 11-7, on Thursday. A showdown against No. 3 American Fork on Tuesday followed by Skyridge on Thursday takes the Knights into Spring Break.
No. 8 Davis - The Darts continue to win games with Layton and Pleasant Grove falling victim last week. Clearfield, who sits at 5-2 on the season, will head to Davis on Tuesday to try and play spoiler. The Darts then host Syracuse on Thursday.
No. 9 Green Canyon - The Wolves hosted No. 2 Olympus on Friday and were outplayed, falling by the score of 14-2. The team will look to rebound on Wednesday at No. 5 Park City then again at Waterford on Friday.
No. 10 Fremont - Fremont sneaks into the polls at 4-1 with the lone loss being to No. 8 Davis by one goal. The Silverwolves beat Weber, 17-15 on Tuesday and Sky View, 16-13, on Wednesday. Fremont will host Syracuse on Tuesday and Roy on Thursday.
Other games of note: Layton picked up a nice win on Monday, 9-7, over Logan. Brighton edged Wasatch, 8-7, on Tuesday. Riverton beat Herriman, 9-8, for a key region victory. on Wednesday, Woods Cross beat Highland, 15-10.
On another note, it appears West has folded. Shout out to Sean Zuckerman, the West coach for his efforts year in and year out. Sean and I go back to 2007 at Cottonwood High School. It was my first foray into coaching and Sean and his brother Ben were staples on the team. Fun times!
Girls High School
No. 1 Park City trumps again by winning its two games this past week. On Wednesday, Park City defeated No. 6 Lone Peak with a 17 point differential, 18-1. Following the win over Lone Peak, the Miners dominated Riverton on Thursday, 20-4. Park City will travel to play Wasatch on Friday night.
No. 2 Skyridge moved up two spots this week with an exciting win over No. 3 Brighton. That game vs Brighton was a nail bitter. Skyridge is lined up to play Westlake on Tuesday.
No. 3 Brighton had an amazing win over No. 7 Corner Canyon on Wednesday night but fell one point short against No. 2 Skyridge Friday night. Brighton is hosting Lehi on Thursday.
No. 4 Olympus had a great win over Viewmont on Tuesday night, 21-1. The Titans will take a break before resuming play in two weeks.
No. 5 Mountain Ridge has stayed steady in the poll as they defeated West Jordan Tuesday night, 14-5. On Thursday night, they battled against Copper Hills and won, 22-1. This week they will be playing Juan Diego on Tuesday and Bingham on Thursday.
No. 6 Lone Peak had no movement in the poll from last week. Lone Peak challenged No. 1 Park City on Wednesday night and lost. Heading into this next week, they’re matched up against American Fork on Tuesday.
No. 7 Corner Canyon is moving up in the polls. Wednesday night Corner Canyon fell to No. 3 Brighton, 13-7. They had a great win over Bingham on Friday night with a 12 point margin of victory, 15-3. Next up for Corner Canyon is Pleasant Grove on Tuesday and Westlake on Friday.
No. 8 Davis has yet to lose a match-up this season. They beat Layton, 17-7, and will take on Clearfield on Tuesday and Syracuse on Thursday.
“Our game went pretty well. We had to sit a few key players in the first half due to team policy so it was good to see how our team managed without them. We were sloppy at first but then the girls really started to gain confidence and took control of the game towards the end of the first half. We started to face guard Layton's #1 player Rylee Webster and once we did that we pretty much shut down their offense. We came away with the 17-7 win,” said Coach Hekking.
No. 9 Bear River made its way onto the board. A fantastic win over Box Elder on Thursday night brought them into the Top 10 of the coaches poll. Bear River will be taking on Farmington on Friday.
No. 10 Herriman moves down 3 spots this week with their one-point loss to Riverton and one-point loss over Fremont. Herriman beat West Jordan on Thursday night by one goal. The Mustangs will take on Bingham and Viewmont this week.
3/21 - Pleasant Grove beat Waterford, 21-5
”We all worked super well together. Playing hard to make sure everyone had the opportunity to score as well as making/practicing plays. All the girls pushed with lots of intensity tonight,” said Pleasant Grove Captain Val Gonzalez.
3/21 - Skyline beat Maple Mountain, 9-7
”Kamryn Berg is an outstanding member of our team that truly shined during our contest with Maple Mountain. Kamryn used her high lacrosse IQ to command the field as a midfielder and was able to direct the flow of the game with high proficiency. Kamryn was aggressive with her ground ball pickups and had an electric performance vs. Maple Mountain,” said Coach Jeramy.
3/21 - Ridgeline beat Judge, 14-8
Judge fought hard against Ridgeline, falling short on goals they stood proud with their outcome on their draw control. Judge played a game of improvement, as the game played on their team continued to grow. Judge nominates Emma Steffensen (Goalie) as their player of the game. She had many amazing saves and great plays outside of the crease. Ridgeline excelled at their off-ball movement and heads-up plays. Alivia Jackson drove the team with amazing shot selection, grand assists and amazing efforts.
3/22 - Riverton beat Herriman, 15-14
Riverton defeated Herriman on Tuesday night by a slim one-goal margin. Riverton walked away from this game proud of their powerful defensive slides and intense ball control off the draw. Riverton takes from this game to continue working on staying close on cutters. At the helm of Riverton high is the player of the game Keira Riddle, she was an amazing asset to Riverton’s attack with 7 goals with such a close game. Keira made all the difference for Riverton’s success.
3/22 - Highland beat Waterford, 15-14
Highland played a competitive game vs Waterford. With a one-point lead, Highland had the opportunity to engage their skills on face guarding waterford’s top player. As Highland progressed through the game their defense was becoming flawless but the re-defending on rides was becoming unstoppable. Highland nominated Amelia Santalli for her 7 goals, 5 assists, 15 draw controls and 6 ground balls. Wow, what amazing stats for such a close and intense game. “This was a great game to start the season. The teams felt evenly matched and it was great to get a good game under our belts,” said Coach Liddle.
3/22 - Alta beat Timpview, 17-4
Alta defeated Timpview with their ability to enhance their level of play from game to game. During this game vs Timpview Alta learned to continue forward with the game no matter what situations or calls came their way. Alta nominated Mylie Johnson as their player of the game “Mylie contributed everywhere on the field tonight. She scored, had assists, ground balls, and great passes. When the ball was transitioning to attack she was always full of a way to get open. When the ball was transitioning to defense she would stay with the ball until the restraining line. She’s played really well tonight,” said Coach Breur. “As we play more games I notice my girls playing better and better together. We are starting to look like a team that has played together for years but it’s only been a couple of weeks. They’re making me very excited for what’s to come this season!”
3/24 - Timpanogos beat Timpview, 10-0.
Timpanogos hosted Timpview Thursday night. Timpanogos number 4 Amelia Yarro scored a hat trick in the first half. Amelia began the game with a goal within the first few seconds, off the draw straight to the back of the cage. As the game played on, numerous of the Timpanogos players had touches on the ball but the shocking ending even had my jaw drop. As the clock ticked down in the last few moments number 13 Brenna Bronson shot and scored from outside of the 8 meter with 30 seconds to spare. The distance was impressive but the execution is what had me stunned, fast and tight to the bottom corner. After the game I walked down to speak with my new friend Meganh Hallam and I asked her how she felt about the shutout game. “Awesome” she stated. The team had great ground balls which helped them with this game. Timpanogos was overjoyed for this win as they had never won against Timpview, little alone having a shutout game against them. Timpanogos nominated Zoe Holdaway for her stand out talent this game. Zoe had 3 goals, amazing attack rides and control the attack to creat open lanes for her teammates to score. “We worked hard on our ground balls and I really think that’s where we won the game! We were there every time the ball hit the ground,” said Coach Hallam.
3/24 - Jordan beat Alta, 9-7.
Jordan had an outstanding win over Alta (9-7) Jordan worked together on defense and kept their emotions under control to maintain a great flow. This team acknowledged their true talent when they worked together and communicated throughout the game. Jordan nominated Kammi Burnett as their player of the game. Kammi protected the goal continuously throughout the game. “I am so proud of her. Jordan is grateful for each amazing save,” said Coach Lange
3/25 - Clearfield beat Green Canyon, 10-9.
Clearfield takes home their very first win of the season in double overtime. I reached out to a good friend of mine at Clearfield and she informed me of the double overtime and the winning goal being made by Senior Elise Campbell. I love to see every team get the chance to shine with a win. Congratulations to both teams in a beautiful game of girls lacrosse.
3/25 - Bountiful beat Ridgeline, 9-8.
Bountiful nominated Millie Urie as their player of the game. “She excelled at hustling to every ground ball and helping ride in the midfield. She took care of the ball on offense and was a fantastic leader for her new team,” said Coach Cope.
Inside Lacrosse caught up with Utah Head Coach Drew McMinn. Listen to the interview here.
It was a busy week for our local men’s teams. On Wednesday, Westminster beat Montevallo, 17-6, on the backs of Spencer Whinery and Dylan Brauer who had three goals each for the Griffins.
On Thursday, the Utah club team beat Fort Lewis, 18-2. UVU fell to Colorado State, 11-8 and BYU beat Colorado, 7-6.
On Friday, Utah State beat Northwest Nazarene, 17-5.
On Saturday, Utah beat Mercer, 23-9, in front of a great crowd at Ute Field. Jordan Hyde had 6 goals while Josh Rose finished with 3 goals and 3 assists for the Utes. Ironically, the Utah baseball team hosted the Mercer baseball team on Saturday and won by an even more dominating score, 25-8.
In the MCLA, Colorado beat Utah Valley, 18-14, while BYU beat Colorado State, 16-12. Utah State fell to Boise State, 16-5. The Utah club beat Montana State, 12-10.
On Sunday, Westminster beat RMAC foe CSU-Pueblo, 10-6.
Pole Goal of the Week goes to Rylan Lemons who goes coast-to-coast in this lovely transition goal from Utes. Notice how he keeps the stick vertical at the end to avoid the trail check. Beautiful.
3/30 - BYU @ UVU, 7pm - Show up! Be loud!
4/1 - Westminster @ Belmont Abbey, 5pm
4/1 - Texas A&M @ BYU, 7pm
4/1 - SUU @ USU, 7pm - Show up! Be loud!
4/2 - Utah @ Air Force, Noon
4/2 - Texas A&M @ UVU, 2pm
4/3 - Westminster @ Mount Olive, Noon
4/3 - College of Idaho @ USU, 11am
There is a BIG game today at Westminster as the Griffins take on Lindenwood. The Lions have three Utah natives on the roster: Aleksa Allen (Herriman), Zoe Totland (Brighton) and Logann Eldredge (Herriman). Show up and watch talent from Utah on both sides of the ball. The game begins at 4:30 pm.
Westminster will head to Colorado this weekend to face UC-Colorado Springs on Friday and Regis on Sunday.
In the WCLA D-I ranks, BYU beat rival Utah State, 16-10, and Utah beat Colorado State, 21-13.
BYU will head to Colorado for a three-game swing against Boston College, Michigan and North Carolina. Utah State is also heading to Colorado to take on Colorado State and Texas.
In the WCLA D-II, UVU will head to Boise and will take on Northwest Nazarene and Montana State. Weber State heads to Colorado to take on Colorado School of Mines, Wyoming and Air Force.
That’s it for this week, stay safe out there and see you on the sidelines!
— Tim Haslam (Intro/Mens/Boys), Kenzie Christiansen (Womens/Girls) & Brad Lavoie (Armchair Lacrosse Coach)