OGDEN — Former major league baseball player Wally Pipp is perhaps best known for taking the day off due to a headache, allowing Yankee great Lou Gehrig to start at first base, a position that ‘he did not give up for the next 2130 consecutive games.
Ogden High senior Rick Duran is perhaps best known as a striker for the Tiger football team, but he started as a goalkeeper in the last two games and recorded back-to-back shutouts while guarding the net.
So far things are looking good for the Tigers as they have been impressive on the pitch, the latest being a 2-0 victory over rival Ben Lomond on Thursday in Region 13.
Once injured goalie Hunter Paskins recovers, Duran says he’ll gladly give up the spot; he wants to be on the field running.
“(Paskins) is going to come back; I want to be on the pitch and score,” Duran said. “Our defense has been excellent, work together, talk a lot. We have such good chemistry together.
On the attacking end of the ball, senior captain Jace Oliverson did all the damage, scoring a second-half brace for the game’s only goals.
Ben Lomond (2-6, 1-3 Region 13) fought off the Tigers (6-2, 3-1) in a goalless first half, but Ogden quickly rallied in the second stanza.
“We knew we were better as a team. We just needed to talk,” Oliverson said. “We tried to dribble too much in the first half. If we pass it around, we can score on anyone.
Oliverson broke the deadlock on his first goal in the 46th minute, with a little help from his friends.
“Ozzy (Norton) and Brigham (Aradema) were all over the ball,” Oliverson said. “It was pretty much theirs; they left me an open ball and I was able to pass it.
His second goal came from a corner, which Oliverson headed past the keeper towards the back post in the 73rd minute.
Different sport, different playing surface, but Oliverson and a few of his teammates were part of the Ogden basketball team that lost a last-second outing in the area and a 3A state playoff game at Ben Lomond earlier this year, so Thursday was at least a big win against a rival.
“It’s a fun game, one of the most fun of the year, but we have to take it one game at a time,” Oliverson said. “We are a few (from the basketball team), so it feels good to have them here. I think about it a little, but it is above all football that concerns me.
The Scots never really mounted a goal threat with few shots on goal, and had the two brief lapses in defense that cost them the game.
“Hats off to them, they came to play. Just two moments on our mistakes,” Ben Lomond coach Torrey Sasaki said. “We can’t give up on a good team like Ogden because when we did, they cleared the back of the net. It was a good game overall; we have things to settle.