Steamboat boys lacrosse wins big in home opener
Steamboat Springs boys lacrosse is off to the start of the season it dreamed of.
Following a commanding 12-4 victory in its home opener against the Mullen Mustangs on Thursday, March 16, the team is now 2-0 on the year while averaging 15 points per game while giving up an average of two.
Junior Finn Rodgers is impressed with how quickly the team has gelled this year. He thinks the wins will only make them stronger as a group.
“The past couple years we have struggled with having a good and solid team,” Rodgers said. “This year we are getting on that and one thing we are really focusing on now. It’s going to help and it has already been paying off.”
The early success can be attributed to a lot of things. Head coach Brian Rodgers said it comes down to the way the team has been playing fast, aggressive and applying pressure early in games.
The Sailors established offensive control from the start against Mullen and scored six unanswered goals in the first quarter alone.
Mullen gained some traction midway through the game, opening the second half with an early goal but all momentum was quickly shut down by the Sailors who answered every Mustang goal with one of their own.
A major contributor to the team’s offensive dominance was senior Andrew Kempers, who tallied five goals in the game. It means a lot to him to start the season this way in front of his home crowd.
“I’ve never really been a goal scorer and then all of a sudden I started putting them in the net,” Kempers said. “It means a lot and all my teammates are passing and feeding to me right up the middle.”
Now 2-0 on the season, Steamboat will go on the road against Cheyenne Mountain on Saturday, March 18.
Cheyenne Mountain is the reigning state champion and will be a good test to see just how strong this Steamboat team is.
Brian Rodgers is excited for the opportunity to play against a top team this early in the season and wants his players to solidify the system a little more for Saturday’s game. Once they do that, he thinks his boys could go up against any team in the state.
“We’re playing the defending state champs on Saturday so we better have our A game with us,” Brian Rodgers said. If we keep building step by step, these guys could be good. We’ve got a pretty athletic group here.”
Steamboat Springs 12, Mullen 4
SS: 6 1 2 3
M: 0 2 1 1
To reach Tom Skulski, call 970-871-4240, email tskulski@SteamboatPilot.com.
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