FORT COLLINS — To say the least, Horizon’s coach Aaron Smith knew this game was going to be a tough one for his team. What he didn't know was that they were going to be completely shut out by Fort Collins, which remained undefeated.
The third-ranked Lambkins (5-0 overall, 1-0 5A Front Range League) scored a total of five goals during their tremendous game Thursdsay afternoon, registering the 5-0 win. Even though senior Jake Rudel was under the weather, he was still able to have thirty minutes of playtime in which he scored two goals and assisted on another.
Fort Collins coach Justin Stephens credits Rudel as the best offensive player of the game.
"On the attacking side, he was kind of limited today, Jake was sick but he still did a lot in the little time that he played," Stephens said.
The Hawks (3-3, 0-2) played very slow on the defensive side of things. Going into halftime, the Lambkins had already scored twice. They had a good pace on both sides of the ball and they seemed to be one step ahead of the Hawks when it game to retrieving the ball throughout the game.
According to the fans, the Lambkins came back even stronger out of halftime, but coach Stephens said otherwise.
"You never want to give a team the opportunity to get behind you, you want to make sure you bring pressure in all the thirds," Stephens said. "I thought we let them get behind us too often so we have to clean that up."
Aside from the Lambkins defensive issues, they played tremendously. On the defensive side, midfielder Robby Evans had a great game. He constantly allowed his teammates to get forward and he took care of the hole in the middle.
Rudel started out the second half with a bang, quickly adding another point to the Lambkin’s score. Max Bostak and Eric Thompson followed up with two more goals bringing the Lambkins to their 5-0 victory.
Hawks goalkeeper Braden Mangel may have had five goals scored on him, but Smith is still very proud of him. After being pelted many times, Smith says Mangel may have gotten a little frustrated.
"A goalie should only be expected able to come up big a few times a game and he easily had 15-20 saves," Smith said. "No goalie should ever have to endorse stuff like that."
The Hawks now know that they need to work on their mental and physical toughness going into their next game on Sept. 24.
On the other side of things, Stephens is confident moving forward into the next game.
"They've been on a good run and gotten some good results," said Stephens.
The Lambkins hope to keep their record as clean as it currently is. They aim to get better everyday, compete every match, and let the result speak for itself.