5/4/2018 1:37:00 PM Chisago Lakes boys lacrosse team gets first ever win, topping Buffalo 13-9
Chisago Lakes 13, Buffalo 9 The Wildcats got their historic first victory last week when the beat Buffalo 13-9 on Thursday, April 26.
After dropping the season opener to St. Michael-Albertville, the boys rebounded in a big way with the victory over the Bison.
“It was great to get that first win in CLHS Lacrosse history against a motivated Buffalo team,” Head Coach Mark Nordby said. “Our scoring came from many different players so I’m sure it kept Buffalo guessing who they needed to shut down. We had eight different players scoring and for a while, we were joking that many of them had tied the school record with one goal.”
At halftime, Chisago Lakes was down by one at 6-5, but the boys played at a very high level in the second half, churning out goals to secure the 13-9 win. Ben Koesters led the way with two goals and two assists.
“The guys were connecting their passes and the goals just kept coming,” Nordby said excitedly. “It was great to see the guys so pumped and made the bus ride home pretty energetic.”
Grand Rapids 9, Chisago Lakes 8 After the first win, the Wildcats for their first true heartbreaker against Grand Rapids.
Despite holding a two goal lead with three minutes left, the Wildcats lost in regulation 9-8 to the Warhawks, and Nordby said after reviewing game films, it’s one of those games they just like a do-over during the last stretch.
“As coaches we kept thinking time management, take only point blank shots, and protect the ball. This is what we wished would have happened… but it didn’t. Grand Rapids capitalized on some of our mistakes and mishandled balls and it just kept going down hill,” he explained.
The ‘Cats were still up by one with a minute left, but just a few seconds later, Grand Rapids tied it up at 8-8. They had seized all the momentum and were swarming around the ball, and it paid off.
With just three seconds left, one of their most aggressive players drove and got a shot off despite being well covered and it went in, sending the Warhawks into a frenzy and the Wildcats to a stinging loss.
“It was a tough loss We watched game film and we had chances throughout the game but our ground balls continue to haunt us. Without winning these battles, it’s hard to come out on the winning side of things,” Nordby said. “We will continue focusing on gaining possession of the ball and accurate passing and catching. At times we were really playing well but toward the end, our energy was down and it just wasn’t there.” Chisago Lakes 7, St. Cloud 5 The ‘Cats bounced backed nicely to take down St. Cloud for their first home win in history.
The scoring balance was on display for Chisago Lakes, with their seven goals coming from seven different players. The defense and goalie Brooks Stangl also played very well. Stangl won the team’s player of the game award after the contest.
The game was close the whole way. The ‘Cats started off with the first point of the game, then St. Cloud came back and tied. It kept going this way for most of the contest as Chisago Lakes never had more than a two point lead. Most of that was because of the stellar play of the Tigers’ goalie. Nordby said the boys got off several point blank shots and had a lot of opportunities, but the goalie kept making big saves.
“Our defense came up big and held a pretty prolific scoring team (except against St. Michael) to just five goals. That’s huge. Our ground ball game was better but we still have work to do,” he said. “The good thing is, we haven’t played a great game as a team yet. We’ve had moments where we were in sync on the offensive and defensive ends but we have to keep digging in practice so that we play a complete game the way I know we can. We have a couple wins now but I know we have yet to reach our full potential as a team and that’s pretty exciting.”
Chisago Lakes will go to Delano on Thursday, May 3 for a great match up and then head to Sartell on Friday. Delano is undefeated right now at 4-0 and beat Buffalo by a similar margin as CL did. “We’ll have to be ready from the start of the game mentally, emotionally, and physically,” Nordby said. “If we play our game, have fun, and keep the energy up, this will be a great chance to continue building our resume before sections.”