Lakewood boys lacrosse hands 4A No. 8 Green Mountain its first loss

LAKEWOOD — Boys lacrosse bragging rights in Lakewood were on the line Wednesday night at Trailblazer Stadium.

Cross-town rivals — Green Mountain Rams and Lakewood Tigers — faced off in a non-league game. Lakewood used a key 5-0 run in the first half on the way to a 13-5 victory over Green Mountain.

Lakewood senior Evan Woods, middle, does his best to split Green Mountain sophomore Tyler McNeilly, left, and junior Trey Corkin (13) during the first half Wednesday. (Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Athletics)

“We hit a stride in the second quarter that felt really good,” Lakewood coach Eric Seelbach said about the Tigers turning a 2-1 deficit late in the first quarter into a 6-2 lead late into the second quarter. “We didn’t give them any easy clears and got a ton of turnovers. That lead to a lot of transition goals. The energy was great.”

Lakewood senior Jacob Brunner led the scoring barrage with a pair of goals during the run. Brunner doubled his scoring output on the season with four goals on the night.

“On a personal level, we know a lot of the guys over there,” Brunner said. “It’s always fun to play them, but it’s always good to get the win.”

The Tigers (2-1 record) had balanced scoring with seniors Ethan Mauterer, Kegan Hufford, Evan Woods and Pierce Holley joining Brunner with multiple goals against the Rams.

“We can put out an offense where all six guys are absolutely dangerous,” Seelbach said. “That was really evident tonight.”

Lakewood seniors Jacob Brunner (25) and Ethan Mauterer celebrate a first quarter goal by the Tigers against cross-town rival Green Mountain. (Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Athletics)

Green Mountain (3-1) just entered the Class 4A boys lacrosse rankings this week, coming in at No. 8. The Rams got off to a good start with a pair of first-quarter goals by senior Karson Bell.

Bell scored three times to push his goal total to 14 tallies on the season. Junior Trey Towndrow added the other two goals for the Rams to get his goal total to 10 on the season.

“Great team, scrappy and they have a lot of heart,” Hufford said of the Rams. “It was important for our seniors and our team to get the ball rolling a little bit. It was also important to go into spring break with a win and a winning mentality.”

Lakewood heads to California next week during spring break to get a few games in. When the Tigers get back they jump right into 5A Jeffco League play. Lakewood has its sights set on getting into the mix against history rich programs like Columbine and Wheat Ridge.

“As seniors we’ve never won league or been able to compete (for a league title),” Brunner said.

Green Mountain senior Gavin Forrest (33) races down the field with Lakewood sophomore Luke Hittle (4) closing in Wednesday at Trailblazer Stadium. (Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Athletics)

It’s truly nearly an all-Jeffco conference now with Valor Christian the only non-Jeffco Public School in the 5A Jeffco League.

“That is No. 1 (goal) right now,” Hufford said of competing for a league title. “No. 2 is making the playoffs.”

Hufford said there is even a bet with the Tigers’ head coach. The senior captain said if Lakewood wins the conference title this year, Seelbach said he would dress up like a leprechaun.

“We always want to look at winning Jeffco,” Seelbach said of the conference. “We feel it’s just as likely to be us than anybody else. If we can continue to improve and play like we want to play against opponents I don’t see any reason we couldn’t.”

The Rams also has high expectations. Green Mountain should be in the mix for the 4A Foothills League title with Golden. The Demons' head-to-head victory over the Rams last year decided the conference title.

“We’ve got parts that make us competitive in all the games,” Green Mountain coach Nate Hallahan said. “We have arguably I think the best goalie (Ryan Burdi) in 4A and we have enough scoring when we put it together.”

Green Mountain returns from spring break by opening up conference play on the road against Englewood on April 3.

Lakewood senior Kegan Hufford (11) prepares to take a swipe at jarring the ball loose from Green Mountain junior Trey Towndrow during the second quarter Wednesday night at Trailblazer Stadium. (Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Athletics)