On June 3, the Maple Grove boys lacrosse squad kicked off their postseason play with a home tilt against Breck in the Section 5A quarterfinals, where they narrowly defeated the Mustangs 6-5.
In the first quarter, the Crimson asserted themselves by controlling the ball for most of the frame, which led to four goals, one from Josh Steinkopf, Ethan Villalon, Grant Zick, and Carson Blumer. The Mustangs answered with two of their own, keeping the deficit 4-2 after the opening frame. Blumer added another score late in the second quarter and the Crimson defense kept the Mustangs quiet, en route to a 5-2 halftime lead.
With a 6-2 lead going to the final frame, Breck made one loud, final push. The visitors scored three to cut it to 6-5 and then had a four-minute offensive possession to try and tie the game.
However, just like throughout the season, Maple Grove’s defense held firm. They kept the Mustangs out of the net for the entire possession and staved off a comeback, winning 6-5. Blumer had a team-high two goals. Brady Laurance recorded a team-high three assists, and Zick added two dimes. Hale Farniok made 11 saves on 16 shots.
Maple Grove next faced off against Blake in the section semifinals on June 7 but couldn’t keep up with the Bears, falling 10-7. Second-seeded Blake didn’t need any time to put their stamp on the game, as they scored the first four goals of the afternoon. By the end of the opening quarter, the Crimson were facing a 5-1 deficit. Each team put in two goals in the second frame as the lead stayed four into halftime, 7-3. But in the third quarter, the Bears expanded on their lead, outscoring Maple Grove 3-1 and providing a six-goal differential heading into the final frame.
As good as the Crimson defense has been all year, they now needed their offense to make a statement against a stingy Bears backline. Maple Grove did make a little noise in the mid-stages of the final quarter by scoring three unanswered goals to cut the lead to 10-7, but time was not on their side. Blake held the possession late and walked off the field at Breck High School victorious.
Laurance and Zick each scored a team-high two goals.