The ball stops here: Hanson shows his ability in goal in Fruita’s win
All year long, Kyler Hanson has been manning the goal for the Fruita Monument High School boys lacrosse team and coach Mark Young couldn’t be more proud.
“Isn’t he a stud?” Young said with a grin Saturday after the Wildcats beat Eagle Valley 13-2 at Canyon View Park.
Hanson quietly recorded 16 saves and Young said he can trace his goalie’s success to a drill that can only be pronounced with a sinister tone — the “Ahahahow drill.”
With no defenders, Hanson faces a barrage of shots and by game time, Young said, he’s ready to go.
“We throw the ball hard at him, we don’t hold anything back and they’re wide-open shots,” Young said. “It gets him so ready for a game.”
The end result is a goalie who took everything the visiting Devils had and let them escape with only two goals.
Fruita’s defense left its coach speechless.
“I’m usually yellin’ at the defense and here they are lookin’ so good,” Young said. “That’s why I was so quiet. No one heard me say a word today because the defense was playing so good. I didn’t have to say anything.”
Fruita got on the board early, with Ethan Grider and A.J. Meil scoring three goals in the first two minutes.
“Our transition is really what won it,” said Grider, who finished with five goals. “We had great passes in the beginning, so that was a really big key.”
Grider got support from Meil, Trevor Allen and Jeff Cunningham to take a 8-1 lead at the half.
“We have at least 10 kids that have great shots and all those kids have great passing skills, so when we pass it around and we get those shots available, we’re pretty deadly,” Grider said.
It was the Wildcats’ final home game. Fruita (10-2), finishes the regular season with games Thursday and Saturday at Battle Mountain and Summit.
After losing in the closing seconds Friday against Durango, the Fruita Monument girls lacrosse team was determined not to let it happen again in the rematch.
The Wildcats took an early lead and never let up, beating Durango 8-4 at Canyon View Park.
“We played a lot better today, we jelled more as a team and we moved the ball much better,” Fruita coach Lenny Lang said. “We worked some plays and it all came together.”
Fruita controlled the early tempo and got goals from five different players to take a 5-1 lead into the half.
In the second half, Durango cut into the Wildcats’ lead, but for every goal Durango tallied, Fruita had an answer.
“They were guarding behind the goal,” Mikayla Clark said. “When we were trying to set everything up, but it was so clustered that we couldn’t run anything.”
Mikayla Clark and Pam Stevens finished with two goals each.
Fruita goalie Stephanie Long had 14 saves.
Fruita (5-3) plays Grand Junction on Tuesday at Canyon View Park.