They might be the most exciting two weekends of the entire high-school sports calendar.
Two weekends of state championships. Two weekends that will see all the hard work of the past three months finally pay off. And, the two weekends that bring the last 10 months of a wild — and trying — 2020-21 high school sports season to a close.
Girls golf championships were being handed out as this column hit the presses on Thursday afternoon. On Tuesday, the boys soccer championships will be awarded. The next two Saturdays will see champions crowned in baseball, softball and boys tennis, and next Saturday will bring the track and field season to a close.
For those of us in Tooele County, it ought to be a treat.
Grantsville could very well bring home championships in baseball and softball this weekend. Both teams are at the top of their games and have proven they have the ability to beat anyone placed in their paths, living up to their preseason billing as championship favorites. While it won’t be easy — in fact, this might be one of the tougher seasons in Class 3A baseball and softball to predict in recent memory — it wouldn’t surprise anyone to hear the fire trucks roaring down Main Street come Saturday night
Meanwhile, a bit east along state Route 138, the Stansbury boys soccer team will have a chance to make a little history of its own early next week. The Stallions will be making their first-ever trip to the state semifinals, thanks to their thrilling one-goal win over top-seeded Juan Diego on Wednesday night. They’re two wins away from becoming the first Tooele County soccer team — girls or boys — to win a state championship since the vaunted Tooele High squad of 1997, which included current Stansbury assistant coach Spencer Call.
Next weekend ought to be exciting, as well. The Tooele softball team, already one of the most decorated programs in state history, is the top seed in Class 4A and has been red-hot over the past month or so. The defending state champions won’t have an easy road to another title, but remain the favorites nonetheless. What better way to cap an amazing season than another thrilling matchup against Bear River or someone like Snow Canyon or Canyon View? That would be must-see softball.
Stansbury has a legitimate chance to capture its first title on the baseball diamond, as well. Other coaches have marveled at how deep and talented these Stallions are in casual conversation throughout the season, and they certainly proved it with their win over Class 5A powerhouse Olympus at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City the other day. If they weren’t already confident enough, that should lift them to a whole other level.
However you can watch the games, whether in-person or via live stream, keep your eyes on these teams and our local high school student-athletes over the next week or so. It could be an exciting time here in Tooele County.
Darren Vaughan is a veteran sports writer from Moab, Utah. He looks forward to this time every year, even though it’s by far the craziest part of the calendar. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.