Blue­bird boys lax bounces back

The Avenue News - - FRONT PAGE - By BILL GATES bgates@ches­pub.com

The Ken­wood boys lacrosse team’s three-year reign as the Bal­ti­more County Di­vi­sion II champs was ended last sea­son by a Spar­rows Point squad that won ev­ery di­vi­sion game by 10 or more goals.

But the Point­ers are gone now, moved up to Di­vi­sion I. And the Blue­birds are deter­mined to re­claim their crown.

“Our goal is to win the di­vi­sion,” Ken­wood coach Leigh Nielsen said af­ter the Blue­birds de­feated vis­itng Dun­dalk 12-6 on March 29. “The di­vi­sion is wide open, but I think we can give it a run for the money.”

The Dun­dalk win was huge, com­ing as it did af­ter Ken­wood was up­set by New Town 7-6 on March 24 to start 0-1 in the di­vi­sion.

“Los­ing to New Town set us up for this win,” Nielsen said. “We were fo­cused on this game.”

While Spar­rows Point moved up to Di­vi­sion I, Loch Raven moved down to Di­vi­sion II. The Raiders de­feated the Blue­birds 10-7 last year. Pikesville, which de­feated Ken­wood 8-7 last sea­son, should also be a con­tender for the di­vi­sion ti­tle. “They’ll be a chal­lenge,” Nielsen said. Ken­wood plays at Pikesville on April 19, and hosts Loch Raven in the reg­u­lar-sea­son fi­nale on May 3.

Against Dun­dalk, the Blue­birds were tied 2-2 af­ter the first quar­ter, but outscored the Owls 4-1 in the sec­ond quar­ter to take a 6-3 lead into half­time.

Austin Wendt scored two goals in 16 sec­onds to give Ken­wood a 4-2 lead. Dun­dalk scored to close to within 4-3, but the Blue­birds re­sponded with goals by Ger­ald Jones and Kar­lar Far­ley.

It was still a 6-4 game early in the third quar­ter when Ken­wood de­fender Den­nis Kin­caid scooped up a ground ball and went the length of the field to score a goal.

That sparked a 4-0 Blue­bird run to open up a 10-4 lead. James May­rose scored the next three goals.

Wendt fin­ished with five goals and May­rose scored four goals.

Ken­wood was to host Pat­ap­sco on Wed­nes­day.

PHOTO BY BILL GATES

Ken­wood’s Austin Wendt works against Brandon Fort­ney of Dun­dalk. Wendy scored five goals in the Blue­birds’ 12-6 win.

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