Over the weekend, the USLIA No. 1 CSU men’s lacrosse team defeated the No. 17 Oakland University Grizzlies and the No. 13 Utah Utes on the intramural fields at CSU.
On a beautiful Sunday afternoon, the Rams faced off against conference foe Utah, defeating them 13-3, to cap their first conference victory of the season.
Sophomores Tyler Treece and Campbell Diebolt led the offense with three goals each. Captain Mike Murphy and six other players scored at least one goal against the overmatched Utes.
“I figured we could pressure them,” said head coach Flip Naumberg after the win. “I don’t want to be conservative and go down in flames.”
The Utes had problems possessing the ball all game, which led to many CSU goals, including a flurry of three goals in the second quarter to close the half at 8-2.
The second half was no different for the Utes as they continued to miss passes and drop the ball as the CSU defense stayed strong allowing only one goal in the fourth quarter.
Captain goalie Pete Jokisch recorded 11 saves while Utah’s goalie Jeremy Johnson recorded 18 saves. Jokisch was replaced with three minutes left in the game by sophomore Kurt Bisnette.
On Saturday, the Rams defeated the Oakland (Mich.) Grizzlies 14-5. In the first half, the game was ruled by the defenses of both teams, as the score was 1-0 in favor of the Rams at the end of the first quarter. Jokisch and Oakland goalie Chris Wood played extremely well throughout the whole game.
The CSU offense finally started to break down the Grizzlies defense as they put up three goals in the second quarter. But Oakland would then answer with three of their own. CSU held a 4-3 lead at halftime.
The Ram offense opened up in the third quarter with four consecutive goals. Treece led the third quarter charge with three goals and junior attacker Danny Stevens and senior defenseman Matt Reiss finished the game with two goals apiece.
“I started out the season on offense but they put the longpole in my hand,” said Reiss. “They wouldn’t attack me when I crossed over, so I went for the goal.”
The fourth quarter saw the offense really break down the Grizzly defense, finding the back of the net five times to increase the lead to 14, and put the game away.
Assistant coach Alex Smith said a breakdown in the Grizzly defense was what sparked the CSU offense in the second half.
“They were in a zone defense for most of the first half. We found some soft spots in their defense and we used them,” Smith said following the game.
Jokisch recorded 11 saves and Chris Wood recorded 14, as both goalies closed the day with good performances.
Naumberg said the Rams would be preparing for BYU this week, as both teams travel to Denver to play at Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium at Denver University.
“They are a special team and this is a special game,” said Naumberg. “I can really start game planning for BYU.”
Grant Meech can be reached at email@example.com.