CSU Sweeps Weekend Trip to St. Louis
ST. LOUIS, Mo.— Heading into this weekend the CSU men’s lacrosse team was unsure of how they would measure up to their competitors, having experienced strong competition from Lindenwood in the past and not having played Texas in several years, but once the players stepped onto the field it was clear the Rams had what it takes to win away from home. The Rams beat the Lindenwood Tigers 17-4 on Friday night, and continued their success the next day, beating the Texas Longhorns 12-6. “Lindenwood is definitely young and they have some good players, but I thought we really took the game to them. We are doing a good job right now of recognizing the other team’s strengths and taking them away. That’s a good quality for us to have as we start to play some of the higher level teams in the MCLA” Head Coach Alex Smith said. CSU’s attack men kept Lindenwood’s defense busy especially during the first half, taking 22 shots on goal and scoring 10 points. During the second half Lindenwood played harder, but the Rams still managed to take 14 more shots and score seven more points. Lindenwood’s frustration was evident by the nine penalties received during the game, giving the Rams seven minutes to take advantage of extra man opportunities, during which they scored five points. The Rams didn’t just win on the score board Friday night, they dominated in many aspects of the game, minimizing turnovers, clearing the ball 25 percent more often than the Tigers, and recovering almost twice as many ground balls. “Friday was a good example of the type of team we can be when we get all phases of the game working together,” Coach Smith said. “We can’t be a team that is only good in one or two aspects. We took a good step forwards to being a top level team.” CSU continued to shine against Texas, which was a strong competitor. “They had a few very good players, and they play with fight and resolve I had never witnessed in the many times we have played them over the years,” Co-head Coach Flip Naumburg said. While CSU took twice as many shots on goal, recovered 46 ground balls, and won the majority of face-offs Texas was a strong opponent. The Longhorns kept the intensity high throughout the game. While the Rams dominated many technical aspects of the game, the scores were close, 7-5 at the end of the third quarter with the Rams hanging onto the lead. But a little more than halfway through the final quarter CSU’s attack men secured the win, scoring five points. While this weekend gave the Rams an opportunity to prove their ranking, what it really proved was the players’ ability to create chemistry on the field by connecting with each other and acting as a family. CSU men’s lacrosse will have two games next week. The first will be on Friday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m., and will be against Simon Fraser, a team from British Columbia ranked in MCLA’s top 10. The second game will be against New Hampshire at 1:00 on Sunday, March 7.