BY J. PATRICK EAKEN & DEB GILL-SNOW | MIRROR SPORTS — After a 10-day gap in games due to the weather, the Anthony Wayne boys lacrosse team was more than ready to get back on the field.
The Generals (9-3) made the best of it last Friday when they defeated visiting Westlake, 7-2, on the strength of 34 shots on goal and a strong defensive effort.
Although games had been called off against Perrysburg and Dublin Coffman, AW was not idle and was prepared for the Demons.
During the time off, the Generals worked on adapting their offense to the zone defense they knew they would see from the Westlake (5-5) team.
It paid off as Anthony Wayne hit the ground running. After losing the faceoff but getting a tremendous block by senior goalie Seth Young on a close-range shot by the Demons, the Generals cleared the ball and got down to business.
It was evident the time spent practicing against a zone defense had paid off. Freshman midfielder Alex Talbert found a seam in the zone to start the scoring with less than three minutes gone off the clock.
The Demons then capitalized on an AW turnover and scored to tie it up at 6:20.
After a Mason Alberts takeaway, senior midfielder and team co-captain Tanner Gill-Snow scored on a quick dodge and shot on the run up the middle at the 5:40 mark.
Westlake took possession on the faceoff, but sophomore Nate Recknagel, who had six ground balls and two forced turnovers on the night, made a great defensive play to put the Generals back on the offensive side of the field.
Gill-Snow, off a feed from junior midfielder Mason Alberts, found the net again to put AW up 3-1 with 57 seconds to go in the quarter.
Junior midfielder Jacob Walters won the faceoff and without much time remaining, Alberts once again found Gill-Snow, who fired a laser with six seconds to go to earn a hat trick for the evening.
At the end of the first quarter, it was 4-1 Generals.
AW worked the ball around quickly to continue to shift Westlake’s zone out of position in the second quarter. Sophomore attack Marcus Villagomez found his way to the net through a scrum of Demons to put the Generals up by four with 8:57 to go in the second quarter.
With AW facing a man-down situation after a penalty, the Demons took advantage and scored with 6:20 left in the half. The score was 5-2 at halftime and remained that way until the fourth quarter.
Mason Alberts (assist to Gill-Snow) opened the scoring in the fourth with a goal at the 10:55 mark to give the Generals a 6-2 lead.
The Demons went a man down after a slashing penalty and AW went to work on its man-up offense. A precision feed from Villagomez to Alberts in front of the net put another tally on the board to give the Generals a five-goal lead with 7:37 remaining in the game.
Anthony Wayne spent a great deal of time on offense as its defense (Nolan Bishop, Hans Rudolph and Chase Alberts) caused Westlake to turn the ball over several times.
Despite several more shots on goal by the AW offense in the fourth, none of them hit the mark, and the Generals came away with the 7-2 win.
Young needed just three saves to record the win, as he also got defensive help from Walters, Gill-Snow, senior attack Carson Orr and Villagomez.
Weather permitting, the Generals will finish Northern Lakes League play this week with games against Bowling Green and Perrysburg and will face tough non-league opponents in Delaware Hayes and Ottawa Hills.