(LAFAYETTE, La.) The #1 state-ranked Wolves faced off against the #2 state-ranked St. Thomas More Cougars on a cool Lafayette Saturday (March 3) afternoon in a tough back and forth in which the Wolves secured a victory by a scoreline of 10-6. This win sets the pace for the rest of the Wolves’ season, and they can build off of it for all the games to come.
The first quarter was the Wolves’ quarter, and they controlled both sides of the field. They scored the first goal of the game and kept the pressure on the Cougars, scoring a total of 4 goals in the quarter. The defense shut down STM’s offense, only allowing one goal after a controversial play led to a ground ball directly in front of the goal, ending the quarter with the Wolves up 4-1.
The Cougars came back with a vengeance in the second quarter, and their offense stepped up its game, scoring three goals off its man-up and transition play. Because of STM’s improved defensive play, the Wolves had fewer possessions and managed to score only one goal. Heading into the half, the Wolves held a narrow lead of 5-4.
Both teams came out of halftime planning to shut down the other team in the third quarter, and both came close with each side scoring only one goal. St. Paul’s struggled to find good shots and couldn’t keep its shots on target when they did get chances, but they still managed to keep the lead, ending the quarter up 6-5.
The Wolves didn’t want any chance of a Cougar comeback, and the defense snuffed out a majority of drives, holding the Cougars to just one goal in the fourth quarter. The Wolves’ offense spent the fourth quarter taking their time to pick apart a tired STM defense and scored another 4 to increase their lead and bring in a 10-6 win.
While this was a good team victory for the Wolves, one player in particular deserves special recognition. Senior goalie John Connor Flick had his best game of the season, and his 14 saves kept the Cougars offense from truly threatening the Wolves. Flick’s work with the defense during clears meant that the offense had more time with the ball and could keep the pressure on the STM defense.
“The defense faced one of the best offenses in the state and locked them down,” Flick said. “Our offense played just as well, putting up 10 goals in the game. Playing on STM’s field is special to me for many reasons, one of which is our win there last year for the state championship. I just wanted to play my best possible game and I think it showed on the field.”
The defense had a great game and held the second best offense in the state to only 6 goals by shutting down the Cougars’ star attackmen, Mason Duhon and Logan Stinson. At the same time, the Wolves’ offense threatened the Cougars any time they had the ball, and goals came from anywhere and everywhere. The offense played as a team, and this gave them the upper hand over the Cougar defense. The Wolves take the energy and momentum from this important win into a double header this weekend, playing games Friday (March 9) at 7 p.m. against Mandeville and Saturday (March 10) at 5 p.m. against Catholic High, both at Hunter Stadium.
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Important Game Stats
Ian Varney- 2 goals and 2 assists
Chris Flood- 1 goal and 2 assists
Paxton Ballard- 2 goals and 1 assist
Jarrett Meibaum- 2 goals
Austin Holincheck- 2 goals
Andrew Curry- 1 goal
Patrick Brown – 1 assist
Hanson Stuckey- 1 forced turnover
Chris Flood- 1 forced turnover
Hyde Healy- 3 forced turnovers and 2 ground balls
Robby Nolan- 2 forced turnovers and 2 ground balls
Jakob Massy- 4 ground balls
Michael Philippe- 3 ground balls
Adam Love- 5 ground balls
Jackson Gold- 1 ground ball
J.C. Flick- 14 saves and 5 ground balls