Mavericks pepper Lindenwood with shots in close win
The Colorado Mesa men’s lacrosse team shot the ball over and over Friday night against Lindenwood University. The Mavs proved that if you hit iron enough times, eventually a few will rattle in. The 5-4 victory saw the Mavericks hit the posts nine times, including four in a 15-second span.
“We’re not going to blow anybody out,” coach A.J. Stevens said. “We’re going to have to work hard, plug away and not make any mistakes. When you’re playing games this close, one mistake can cost you.”
After scoring two early goals, the Mavs’ offense stalled, taking 18 shots but no goals. James Sharp nearly gave the Mavericks the lead when his over-the-shoulder flick clanked off the post.
Defensively, the Mavericks were propped up by superior goalkeeping. Brad Brandenburg started the game before giving way to Zach Weaver in the second half. Weaver sealed the victory with the save of the game, stopping a wide-open Lindenwood attacker in the closing minutes.
“We’ve got two good goalies and why not use them both,” Stevens said. “One’s a lefty and one’s a righty. You get used to shooting against a lefty and it gives us a different look.”
Dan Ashlock, the two-time WILA defensive player of the week, stonewalled the Mavericks in the first half, despite Lindenwood being out-shot 29-10 in the game.
Weaver surrendered Lidenwood’s first shot of the half, but Sharp wouldn’t waste his second chance in front of the net, bringing the Mavericks even at 3-3. Daniel Caddoo notched his second goal of the night less than minute later to give Mesa its first lead of the night. But Lindenwood drew even on its next drive to end the third quarter with a tie.
Caddoo opened the fourth quarter with another goal, completing his first career hat trick. The Mavericks would hit crossbar four more times, including one on an open net, but couldn’t convert on any more fourth-quarter chances.
“We have this mentality,” Caddoo said. “If we all do our jobs we the goals will come.”
Kade Robinson added his sixth goal of the season, and Aaron Eggiman’s two-assist night gives him a team-high six assists.
“We’re a lot more mature this year,” Robinson said. “Last year we were pretty much all freshmen. This year us sophomores are bringing the freshmen up to our level and that pays off.”
Colorado Mesa is finding out how it measures up against nationally-ranked NAIA teams.
Bethany (Kan.) College, ranked 14th in the nation, defeated the Mavericks 8-1 on Friday afternoon in Denver.
Mesa (4-9) has lost to three consecutive nationally ranked NAIA programs in the past week.
The Swedes (8-3) won five of the six singles matches and swept the doubles.
Mesa freshman Jordan Lyden rallied from a set down to win 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 at No. 2 singles.