The newly anointed No. 1 CSU men’s lacrosse team had an eventful weekend as they faced off against the No. 20 Arizona State Sun Devils and the Utah State Aggies. The Rams were determined to justify themselves as the best team in the country and did not disappoint.
On Saturday afternoon CSU hosted ASU in the first true home game this season. CSU bullied the Sun Devils 15-6 in a very physical game.
Sophomore attacker Tyler Treece led the offensive assault with five goals. Six other Rams scored at least one goal in the contest.
The Rams (7-2, 1-0 in conference) dominated the first quarter of play with a 6-2 scoring run. But Rams head coach Flip Naumberg said ASU stepped up in the second quarter.
“We came out with a lot of energy in the first quarter,” Naumberg said. “But they really took it to us in the second quarter.”
The Sun Devils managed to hold the Rams scoreless in the second quarter, setting up a 6-3 score going into halftime. Despite his lead, Naumberg was upset with the way his team was performing.
“I told them to get their heads out of their you-know-what and start to focus on their own jobs,” Naumberg said. “We came out blazing in the third quarter.”
The Rams regained their composure on offense, scoring eight goals in the third quarter. The defense put on a show of their own in the fourth, blanking their opponents for the entire period.
The game marked the second time CSU and ASU have met, and if a rivalry didn’t exist before, it does now, Naumberg said. The game was filled with personal foul penalties, trash talking and big hits. The teams were flagged a combined 14 times during the game.
The physical win came only a day after the Rams annihilated the Utah State Aggies, 22-2. Naumberg’s potent offense scored the game’s first 17 goals on their way to the comfortable win.
Sophomore attacker Dylan Bowman led the scoring show with four goals. Junior Ryan Trude and sophomore Kevan Pimentel followed with three goals apiece and senior Pat Bird found the net twice.
Senior goalie Pete Jokisch did not start against Utah State, which paved the way for sophomore Garret Fitzgerald. He recorded three saves.
Utah State is the first conference team the Rams have faced this season. The Rocky Mountain Lacrosse Conference should test CSU, as it includes No. 5 BYU, No. 8 CU and No. 19 Utah.
Grant Meech can be reached at email@example.com.
Next Men’s Lacrosse game:
CSU vs. UNC Bears, 4 p.m. Wednesday
Location: CSU, on the field east of the Student Recreation Center