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Prep notes: ALA forward Chichia closing in on state record

Published April 23, 2014 9:09 am

Prep notes • The Eagles' soccer star is just six goals away from the state's single-season mark.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Get to know the name Mahonry "Titi" Chichia. The junior at American Leadership Academy is quietly — or not-so-quietly if you're a Class 2A defense — putting together one of the best single-season performances in Utah high school prep soccer history.

The Eagles forward has 34 goals and 10 assists through the first 12 matches for the defending 2A state champions. Chichia, who started as a freshman in the ALA midfield and battled back from an ACL injury last year, sits six goals away from the single-season goal record. The record, according to the Utah High School Activities Association records book, is held by Springville's Jon Bailey, who scored 40 goals in 1990.

With two regular-season matches left for the 10-2 Eagles and the 2A tournament ahead, Chichia could lay claim to a 24-year-old state record.

"He's just an all-around field player," said ALA coach Steven Solen. "He can pass, shoot, run the midfield and do everything. He's a vocal kid."

If the Eagles are to repeat as 2A state champs, they'll need to rely on Chichia, Renzo Barreto (12 goals, 19 assists) and 2013 2A title game hero goalkeeper, Anson Gwilliam.

"We're playing really well," Solen said. "We lost a lot of starters from last year, but we've built really good chemistry."

Bohling tosses no-no

Kirtlyn Bohling has already built a stellar career, but the Salem Hills senior hurler found a way to add to her legacy on the mound this week. Last year's Tribune 4A MVP and Gatorade's Utah Player of the Year threw a seven-inning, no-hitter in a 5-0 win over Maple Mountain on Thursday. Bohling struck out eight and walked two for the defending 4A state champion Skyhawks in the no-hitter.

During her dominant junior year, Bohling struck out 285 batters in 151 innings and had a 0.35 ERA.

Former Ute returns

Former University of Utah basketball player Tre Smith was named head coach of his alma mater Cyprus this week. The 25-year-old accepted the job after helping coach the program as an assistant for the last three seasons. Smith, who was at Utah from 2007 to 2010, faces an uphill battle early on. Cyprus has won a total of 12 games the last four seasons and went 2-21 in the 2013-14 season.

"The culture of the program has definitely taken a nosedive at this point," Smith said. "The challenge is trying to change the culture of the program, to build the community for these kids so they feel confident and win basketball games. We have to get it to where the kids feel confident."