Freshman Blake Eiland’s goal off an Andrew Lyon feed with 9:18 remaining gave the Delaware Hayes boys lacrosse team its first and only lead.
The Pacers made the goal stand up in a 5-4 victory over Olentangy Orange in the teams’ season opener at frigid Cornell Stadium Tuesday in Delaware.
“We just played as a team, we ran our offense and we just stuck with the grind,” Hayes coach John Lyon said. “We were getting our shots – we had a ton of shots. Orange is a very, very good team.”
Senior Alex Schumacher scored two goals to lead the Pacers (1-0), who avenged a loss to Orange in the 2016 Ohio High School Lacrosse Association tournament.
“We wanted that one,” Schumacher said. “We wanted to do it for the coaches and the past teammates to get that win back for them.”
The Pioneers made Hayes work for it on offense. Senior Trevor Rusk stopped 15 shots in goal to keep the game tight.
Sam Lagando and Ryan Smudz had a goal apiece for the Pacers, Dalton Powers finished with an assist and Tyler Carney had five saves in goal.
“We played for each other – which I thought was really important,” Schumacher said. “We thought we were a step ahead of them the entire game, to be honest. We had a million shots – just none of them hit cage. So, we were confident our offense was working. We knew they would fall eventually if we just kept sticking to it.”
Orange’s Luke Schmeling scored two goals to lead the way, assisted on both by Cooper Durst.
The second of Schmeling’s goals came with 6:03 left in the third period to give Orange a 4-3 lead.
Mason Handa and Jack Applegate each had goals and Bo Roby and Sam Hughes each tallied assists for the Pioneers (0-1).
“(Hayes) did a really good job possessing the ball,” Pioneers coach Pat Boyce said. “Where we made mistakes was in transition. When we turned the ball over they quick-struck us every time. Our offense had opportunities, but we didn’t capitalize on them.”
Both teams are back at it Thursday night at 7 p.m. Orange opens its home slate against Granville and Hayes hosts Olentangy Liberty.
“All the Olentangys are good,” Lyon said. “We’ve gotta move on and prepare for what’s next and that’s Liberty.”
Also: Buckeye Valley 12, Marysville 3.
Delaware Hayes 15, Westerville South 1; Olentangy Liberty 15, Dublin Jerome 9; Olentangy Orange 10, Pickerington North 3.
Follow Michael Rich on Twitter @mrichnotwealthy or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.