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July 22, 2018

5/11/2018 11:02:00 AM
'Cats nearly storm back vs Delano

Delano 9, Chisago Lakes 8
The Wildcat boys lacrosse team nearly gave Delano their first loss of the year last week, but fell just short.

“There's something about the 8-9 score that we just can't seem to shake.  This is the second game we've come up one point short with that point total,” Head Coach Mark Nordby said. “The strategy we took defensively was to shut down their number one scorer Mitchell Durst, which worked.  Ryan Marx played Durst super tight and kept him pretty quiet most of the night. But, even taking there number one scorer out of the game, Delano still had plenty of firepower that they spread around between seven players.”

Wildcat goalie Brooks Stangl played extremely well in net, stopping some point blank shots from the Tigers early.

Matt Mohr and Preston Willman got CL on the board, giving them an even 2-2 score after one quarter. Delano came out very aggressive in the second quarter, though, putting in three more goals and the ‘Cats were only able to tally one.

“It felt like their score should have been more as we were in our defensive end a lot.  At halftime I reminded the guys that the score was only 5-3 and we were not playing nearly as well as we could,” Nordby explained after the game.

The boys responded to the challenge and shut out the Tigers in the third quarter and they got one back when Max Martin put one in the net from the left wing.

Heading into the  fourth quarter, Delano led 5-4 with CL nipping at their heels. The Tigers did well fending the Wildcats off early, scoring three pretty quick goals to push their lead to 8-4 with just under six minutes to go. It looked daunting to the ‘Cats, but they kept working and played some of their best ball of the season according to Nordby.

With just a minute and a half left, CL was down 9-6 but Jackson Nelson touched the twine to score a goal and trim the deficit to two.

“We were hustling, winning battles and put another in with a Ben Koesters left shot with 31 seconds to go,” Nordby said. “We fired a few more but missed on both and the horn sounded.

“It was an intense game and a great battle between us and we just brought our intensity a bit too late.  It's a learning experience that will help us in future games.”

Chisago Lakes 15, Sartell-Sauk Rapids 8
The Wildcats had to recoup quick after their loss to Delano, as they traveled to Sartell on the next night. “Having back-to-back road games on consecutive days is not easy but the guys were up for the challenge,” the head coach said. “This was our first time playing or even practicing on grass so the bounces were a bit different than on turf.”

After the first quarter the score was 2-2 with Devin Wahlberg and Nelson each putting one in.  The ‘Cats put in four more in the second quarter versus two for the Stormin' Sabres.  

“At halftime we made a few adjustments and decided to run a play against their zone defense.  We poured it on and had a great third quarter outscoring Sartell 5-2,” Nordby explained. “The guys picked up the intensity much earlier than the previous night and started pulling away pretty easily.  This was by far our best offensive output and the guys were finding each other's sticks. “

Nordby also pointed out how well Chisago Lakes did on the faceoffs, which is an area they’ve struggled with at times this year. Freshman Carson Erickson had a nice night winning a lot of his faceoffs and giving CL crucial control.

Once again, the scoring for the Wildcats was spread between several players with nine guys sharing the scoring.  “That's hard to defend when so many are contributing,” Nordby said.

This week, Chisago Lakes has Rocori at home on Friday, May 11 at 6:30.  They also have a great game when the 6-1 Rogers team comes for a visit on Monday, May 14 at 6 p.m. The game will also mark senior night for the Wildcats, where seniors and their parents will be honored for their dedication to the sport over the past years.

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