Clipper Sports Editor
DRAPER – The Viewmont Vikings girls’ soccer team was looking to defend its state title by getting back to the 5A state finals.
Against the Lone Peak Knights Tuesday night at Juan Diego Catholic High School, the Vikings accomplished getting back to the finals after a second half goal by Kaitlyn Palmer helped Viewmont get the win, 1-0.
The goal by Palmer was just her third of the season, but it proved to be one of the most important.
On the goal, a great feed by one of her teammates left her open on the other side of the field. She was able to get her shot over Lone Peak’s goal keeper, Cassidy Smith, and the ball rolled to the back of the net.
The Vikings’ defense played well throughout, and goal keeper Haley Johnson was kept busy by Lone Peak after the Viewmont goal.
After an unproductive first half, Lone Peak’s offense attempted to turn up its tempo in the second half. Johnson made two very key saves in the second half after the offense gave her the lead, helping preserve the shutout.
The first came in the 70th minute, when a set piece by Lone Peak was kicked high into the Viewmont scoring area. Johnson made a jumping save, and kicked the ball back into play.
The second save came five minutes later, in the 75th minute. After setting up a shot, Lone Peak was able to fire a shot to the near post, but Johnson made an amazing save by leaping into the air and laying out for the ball.
The save preserved the shutout for Johnson, and sent the Lady Vikings back to the 5A finals for the fourth consecutive year.
Johnson’s shutout was her 11th of the season, including the playoffs.
Viewmont will face Brighton, which beat Fremont 5-0 in the semi-finals Tuesday afternoon, Friday night at Rio Tinto Stadium. This will be the second meeting between the Vikings and Bengals this season, a match won by Brighton 4-1.
The finals match will also be a rematch of the 2010 finals, which Brighton also won.
Kickoff is 7 p.m.