OAK PARK HEIGHTS — Stillwater used a balanced scoring attack to reel off its third straight Suburban East Conference boys’ lacrosse victory, stopping East Ridge 16-1 on Tuesday, May 9 at Stillwater Area High School.
Since losing to Cretin-Derham Hall in the conference opener, the Ponies (3-1 SEC, 6-2) have outscored their last three league foes by a combined 48-5.
“Two of the last three games we’ve played very well,” Ponies coach Tom Howe said. “At the high school level it’s about playing with consistency. I won’t say we’re there, but we spend five or six days a week together and what we’re seeing is growth within the team.”
Nelson Summary scored four goals to set the scoring pace for the Ponies while Blake Evensen, Marcus Darby, Jack Siedow, Pad DaBruzzi and Mason Green added two goals apiece.
“I think we played a complete team game,” Howe said. “We started out a little bit slow, but not bad. Once we got into our rhythm, everybody played well and other than the first five or six minutes we played a very complete game.”
After clinging to a 2-1 lead after the first quarter, Stillwater exploded for six goals in the second to build an 8-1 halftime lead and followed that up with a seven-goal third quarter.
“There was a bit of a run in the second quarter and that really took the momentum away from East Ridge,” Howe said. “East Ridge is typically a tough team for us and you can’t make mistakes or they’ll capitalize. It speaks to the way we played overall. We contained their shooters and did well overall.”
Connor Chesnut finished with eight saves in goal for the Ponies, who traveled to conference front-runner Park for a key conference game on Thursday, May 11.
“The defense is getting better, the goaltending is getting better and the offense is steady,” Howe said. “You can’t just focus on one or two guys against us. We’re getting better, which is what our goal is.”
East Ridge 1 0 0 0 — 1
Stillwater 2 6 7 1 — 16
Goals — ER, Ben Marburger; St, Nelson Summary 4, Blake Evensen 2, Marcus Darby 2, Jack Siedow 2, Pad DaBruzzi 2, Mason Green 2, Ty Thureson and Tom McGuire.
Assists — ER, Jack Mohler; St, Thureson 4, McGuire 2 and Siedow 2.
Saves — ER, Thomas Miles 2 and Peyton Bixby 8; St, Connor Chesnut 8.
Stillwater 8, Duluth Denfeld 1
At Oak Park Heights, Tom McGuire supplied three goals and Ty Thureson added two tallies to help lift the Ponies to an 8-1 nonconference victory over Duluth Denfield on Thursday, May 4 at SAHS.
It was a bit of a sluggish start for the Ponies, but they scored twice in the opening quarter and led 4-0 at halftime.
“The first three offensive possessions we made some uncharacteristic plays and it has to be more like the Woodbury game where we controlled the ball for the first four minutes. It was not the same efficiency against Duluth.”
Marcus Darby, Jack Siedow and Tony Adami added a goal each for Stillwater, which has allowed a total of six goals combined in its last four games.
“Defensively, we played well,” Howe said. “I think offensively we pressed a little bit too much and tried to do too much at times and it caused some turnovers. You can’t fault too much, except for the opportunities that were missed.”
Connor Chesnut made five saves for the Ponies, allowing just one goal in the third to spoil the shutout.
“There’s a lot of guys, even offensive middies playing defense, and I think overall our team defense was really solid,” Howe said. “Our goaltending was good and even when there may have been some type of defensive miss and they got a shot our goaltending was there.”
Duluth Denfeld 0 0 1 0 — 1
Stillwater 2 2 3 1 — 8
Goals — St, Tom McGuire 3, Ty Thureson 2, Marcus Darby, Jack Siedow and Tony Adami.
Assists — St, Siedow.
Saves — St, Connor Chesnut 2-1-1-1—5.