Pirates record lacrosse shutout

Englewood scores early season win to move to .500

Tom Munds
Englewood defender Tyler Hastings (18) attempts to poke the ball away from a Kennedy player during the Pirates' 13-0 win March 14.
Tom Munds
Englewood's Caleb Medina (25) pushes the attack against a defender during a March 14 lacrosse game against Kennedy. Medina scored three goals and had an assist to help his team win the game, 13-0.
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Englewood's lacrosse team improved to 1-1 on the young season on with an impressive 13-0 win over Kennedy.

“This gives our players a lot of confidence in what they can accomplish,” said the Pirates new head coach Matt Thomas, after the March 14 game. “We have started the process of rebuilding this program. We are making a good start but our small roster is a challenge so we are looking for more players to join our team.”

The Pirates have time to do some recruiting and get new players involved in practices, as the team is not scheduled to compete again until after spring break.

Students return from spring break March 28 and the Englewood lacrosse team returns to action April 1 at home against Gateway and April 4 against Clear Creek. The faceoff for each game will be at 6 p.m. and the games will be played in Englewood High School Stadium.

On March 14, the Pirates controlled the tempo of play from the opening faceoff until the final buzzer. Englewood constantly pressed the attack and most of the game was spent on Kennedy's side of midfield.

The Pirates scored quickly and kept scoring, building their lead up to 10-0 by halftime. The 13 goals on the scoreboard at the end of the game are the most goals an Englewood lacrosse team has scored in recent years.

The coach substituted frequently throughout the game, and in the second half had players, including starters, go into the game in positions they don't usually play. For example, midfielders move to defense and defenders played on the attack line.

“I think our strength is our midfield,” Thomas said. “We put in a lot of things these players haven't done before such as a one-three-two motion offense and a strong team defense to control the game like we did today.”

Thomas said his midfield will be led by sophomore Caleb Medina and junior Austin Trail, who he expects to be the leading scorers for the Pirates this season. He said the defensive leader will be Collin Owens who will also be moved to attack when the Pirates are on the power play.

Against Kennedy, Trail scored four goals and was credited with three assists.

“The Kennedy goalie was good at stopping high shots so I took bounce shots,” Trail said. “That means I shot the ball hard at the ground in front of the net. Those shots worked for me.”

Trail said he had fun when he got to play some shifts on defense in the final two quarters. He said, on defense, he finally got a chance to check opponents.

He also said this year's team has more spirit and is playing better lacrosse.

“This year, we are a team working together,” he said. “Also, our new coach stressed the fundamentals, particularly passing. That's important because we didn't pass well the last couple years.”

Thomas has coached for 15 years including 10 years as a head lacrosse coach. He started lacrosse programs in Hasting, Minn., and Highlands Ranch, and after coaching teams into the playoffs in both locations; he became an assistant at Mountain Vista, before taking the Englewood job.