McDonogh earns 7th win in row, 11-7

5th-ranked Eagles defeat Mt. Hebron

3rd victory over ranked foe in 5 days

Boys lacrosse

April 01, 2001|By Kevin Van Valkenburg | Kevin Van Valkenburg,SUN STAFF

Tired legs, sore muscles and seven straight wins. That's what McDonogh's boys lacrosse team has managed to acquire during the first two weeks of the season.

And after dispatching No. 11-ranked Mount Hebron yesterday, 11-7 -- the Eagles' third win over a ranked team in five days -- they have perhaps the best prize of all: rest.

"It was a real tough game for us," said McDonogh coach Jake Reed. "We're banged up. We played a real tough game in the mud yesterday, but we found a way to win. I don't think many people expected us to be 7-0 right now, but with all the other teams that are losing, any win is a good win."

Joe Benson, a 6-foot-5, 200-pound junior attackman, continued his exceptional play, scoring four goals and handing out four assists in the victory. In McDonogh's previous three games, Benson contributed 10 goals while handing out nine assists.

"I just hope I can keep it up," Benson said. "We got some extra-man goals today, just moving the ball and making one more pass. They're a good team, and they were fired up to try and beat us."

Intensity, however, couldn't quite compensate for limited cohesiveness. Mount Hebron, playing its first game of the season, was every bit McDonogh's equal during several stretches, but dropped a few chances in front of the goal that could have resulted in scores. That resulted in the difference.

"I'm very happy with a lot, this being our first game out," said Mount Hebron coach Jeff Doolan. "They've played seven games and we haven't played any. That showed a little bit."

Still, the Vikings certainly showed they have enough firepower to tango with one of the best private schools in the area. Mike Selawski, Kurt Nordhoff, Justin Waagbo and Billy Cook all found the net in the first half, as the Vikings trailed only 5-4 headed to intermission.

But McDonogh seemed to find its legs again in the third period, and with the help of a few Vikings penalties, outscored Mount Hebron 4-2 to take a decisive lead. Both Benson and Tyler Kelly scored twice, despite the excellent play of Mount Hebron goalie Dan Valente, who made 13 saves.

Mount Hebron made one last push, getting as close as 9-7 after an impressive shot by Nordhoff, who scored from his stomach after being pulled down from behind, but it wasn't enough as Pat Shek scored his third goal of game with two minutes left and Benson added a goal to close out the scoring.

"We're physically and emotionally exhausted right now," Reed said. "But we're feeling good."

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