13 April 2014

Boys Lacrosse: A grand opening

Kevin Clifton scored two goals in the season opener (photo by Jim Lindquist)
In last year's opener Lakeville South handed the Tigers the first of their six one-goal losses of the 2013 season..

Friday night on the artificial turf of Lakeville North coach Paul Sorensen's team used seven unanswered goals in the second half to roll by the Cougars 9-3 in the 2014 opener.

"This was a solid team win," Sorensen said. "Our offense was balanced. Our defense was strong all night and goalie Kyle Kratz stood tall.

"The only negative, and something we can shore up, was we were only two of eight in man-advantage situations...But even there we had a lot of near misses."

The teams hit the halftime break deadlocked a 2-2 and South scored the first goal of the second half to set up what looked to be another nail-biter finish.

But the rest of the contest belonged to the visitors who rattled off seven straight to win going away.

"We took our time, settled down the offense and found soft spots in their defense," Sorensen said. "Some of the shots that were just missing early were finding their way home in the second half.  Possession time was in our favor thus wearing down South's defense long term."

Corey Rudrud also had two goals for the Tigers (photo by Jim Lindquist)

Corey Rudrud and Kevin Clifton scored two goals apiece for the winners with Chris Fitzgibbons, Garrett Gunderson, Dan Block, Tyler Jette and freshman Nick Hinnenkamp each notching one.

Michael Thompson also helped the cause, controlling 83 percent of the face-offs to help set the tempo for the offensive attack.

Farmington finished the night with a 23-10 edge in shots on goal. Kratz, making his first varsity start, recorded seven saves.

The Tigers will go for win No. 2 Monday night when they entertain Park of Cottage Grove in a non-conference contest at Tiger Stadium.