KSU Mauls Mercer 22-0

September 30, 2008

This article is originally from KSU Sentinel.

Just a mere 15 minutes after locking up their first win of the fall season against UT-Chattanooga, the KSU Owls took to the KSU Intramural Field to battle the Mercer University Bears.

The battle quickly turned into a massacre as the Owls ended the game, 22-0.

Mercer took the field in their first game ever, something club president and defensiveman Zach Statham knows well, “It’s always tough coming out as a new team.” KSU welcomed the new program to college lacrosse with two goals in the first two minutes of the game by sophomore attacker and reigning SELC rookie of the year Scotty Schulze and a bone shattering, Sheldon Brown-esque check from junior midfielder Charles Roland.

The Owls attackers and midfielder set up camp in Mercer’s zone of the field, relinquishing their ground for only a few fleeting moments in the first quarter before the physical play from KSU’s defense sent the ball back into their possession. When the first quarter came to a close, the Owls were up, 9-0.

The second quarter saw a shift from the one-sided, offensive flurry of KSU to a brutal contest between the two squads where crosses were wielded more like broad swords than offensive utensils. The physical crosse play soon gave way to physical checks and scrappy counter attacks from both teams. As the quarter came to a close, Schulze picked up another goal, giving him a hat trick in the first half, and the Owls a 12-0 halftime lead.

During the second half of play, fans could see the emergence of Schulze as a “point guard” of sorts, creating opportunities for his teammates as well as himself. These opportunities were taken advantage of by freshman attackman Manny Savas who, coming off of a two-goal performance against UTC, picked up a hat trick of his own.

The Owls showed no mercy as they added ten goals in the second half to seal a 22-0 shutout victory. The KSU defense held the Bears to only three shots, and goalies Noah Rosenblum and Kyle Hansen needed to save only one shot collectively to keep Mercer off the scoreboard. KSU’s offense equaled the performance of the defense, accumulating 37 shots, winning 11 face-offs, and six players with multiple goals, led by Schulze with five.

The team’s performance appeared flawless as they dominated Mercer, but Coach Ken Byers knows the season is young, and stressed that the team needs to be prepared for the spring season. “All the competition we see in the fall sets us up for the spring,” said Byers, who outlined the goals he wants his team to accomplish this year. “Number one, make the SELC playoffs…have a winning season…and have a reputation as a quality program. We haven’t fallen too short of that.”