Boys’ lacrosse loses indoor game to Holy Angels

Lack of practice time affects first game of season


Carissa Prestholdt

Senior Kai Mckee sprints to block Holy Angel’s player from scoring point at Boys’ lacrosse first game of the season. Park lost 6-21 April 17 at the Academy of Holy Angels.

Isabel Kjaer and Sofia Seewald

Looking back on his team’s 6-21 loss April 17, senior Cole Justesen said the team played their best for their first game, taking into account the little practice the lacrosse team has had.

“It is the first game of the season, so it’s not like I am at my peek yet,” Justesen said. “The team played better than I thought we would because we haven’t really practiced much, so for the amount of time we had to prepare we played well.”

According to varsity head coach Chris Bixby, the team hoped to work well together and prove themselves against a strong team. He said although the opposing team defeated Park, the players performed adequately.

“I think the expectations were that we were going to go out and compete and play as a team and I thought we delivered on that,” Bixby said. “The guys played hard, they played all the way through it, and at the end of the day they beat us and the score reflected that, but there are a lot of things the guys did really well.”

Senior captain Kyle Hedblom said Holy Angels proves a worthy opponent to compete against each year. Despite the loss, the players plan to rebound quickly and arrive at their next game well-prepared.

“We play Holy Angels every year. They’re a good team and have good talent, but I really wanted to start out on a win, but that couldn’t happen,” Hedblom said. “We’ll just shake it off, watch some film and get ready for the next game.”

Bixby said Holy Angels appeared to have practiced more extensively than Park had, due to the current point in the season and the less than ideal conditions placing the team in domes and gyms for practice.

“It’s still really early in the season, and it was just one game and I thought the team that we played against looked like they were further along,” Bixby said. “They’ve played some games and are used to playing in a dome, so for us it’s about getting to the point where we’re a little more comfortable on the field. We’re staying positive and working hard.”

According to Hedblom, the dome setting can impair vision while playing, along with the fake grass and temperature influencing the players’ abilities.

“The lighting in the dome is a lot different than that on a field,” Hedblom said. “It messes with your eyes at first so you have to get used to it and the grass is different and the climate control really hinders your performance in my opinion.”

According to Bixby, one player that stood out was junior goalkeeper Noah Houser, as this was Houser’s first varsity appearance and the team depended on Houser’s skills greatly throughout the game.

“Our goalie Noah was awesome. Noah Houser stepped in and this was his first varsity start,” Bixby said. “We put a lot on his shoulders and he had some amazing saves at the beginning and stayed mentally tough.”

According to Hedblom, the team’s defense stayed strong throughout the game, with Houser’s cool mindset and skill set aiding the team.

“Our defense really played well. They all played their part, worked together and got the job done,” Hedblom said. “Also, our goalie Noah Houser absolutely stood on his head. He’d been working hard in the off season and that really showed today.”

Bixby said this game was a stepping stone towards later successes for the team.

“I think it sets a good tone for the season and we can get to that point of being able to compete and start winning games,” Bixby said.

Boys’ lacrosse has its next game at 7 p.m. April 23 at the St. Louis Park stadium against Roseville.