Aaron Feigum controls the ball during a 4-3 win over St. John’s Prep last Tuesday (9). In the background is Blake Nelson (5).

The Minnewaska boys soccer team picked up its first win of the season with a 4-3 overtime victory over St. John’s Prep last Tuesday at home.  The Lakers also were shut out at St. Cloud Cathedral, Thursday, by a 3-0 score and in the results that follow is also information about the team’s 4-1 loss to Fergus Falls, Aug. 25, which was not included in last week’s paper due to early Labor Day deadlines.

Minnewaska, which is 1-4 overall and 1-1 in the Granite Ridge Conference, was set to host Pelican Rapids, Saturday, before playing at Little Falls, Tuesday (tomorrow) and hosting Melrose Area, Thursday.

Fergus Falls 4, Minnewaska 1

In the third match of the week and season for the Lakers, Minnewaska traveled to Fergus Falls, Thursday, Sept. 1 and were defeated 4-1, while also being outshot 16-12. The Otters opened the scoring at 8:00 mark with a goal from Kevin Reno. Minnewaska would rally and play even with Fergus Falls for the rest of the first half.  

“After the initial shock of the early goal by Reno, we settled in and played well,” coach Ted Hill said.  “We connected passes in the back and in the midfield.  Defenders Connor Quelle, Ethan Curry and Noah Palmer faced a good deal of pressure, but with the help of first-year keeper Tenzin Dahl, we were able to keep the ball out of our net.”

With the offense stumbling, the Lakers changed their formation in the second half in an attempt to create more offense.  The change in formation initially led to the Lakers falling behind 2-0 following a goal by Xavi Fernandez at eight minutes into the second half.  

Minnewaska would cut that deficit in half when Laker forward Blake Nelson was awarded a penalty kick six minutes later.  Nelson stepped into the 12-yard penalty spot and ripped a shot into the Otters’ net to make it 2-1 with 26 minutes left to play.  

With only 13 minutes left to play, the Otters would put the match out of reach when Paul Stone scored the third goal for Fergus Falls, and the Otters added another goal in the final 30 seconds.

Minnewaska 4, SJP 3, ot

The Lakers rallied for a 4-3 overtime victory over St. John’s Prep last Tuesday at Minnewaska Area High School in the conference opener.  Minnewaska Area scored the first goal of the game, but SJP went up 3-1 with three goals over a four-minute span late in the first half.

The Lakers rallied with the final goal of the first half and the only goal of the second half to tie up the game in regulation.  Blake Nelson got the gamewinner in the 87th minute off an assist from Aaron Feigum.

The Lakers shifted their formation for the match, moving from their 3-2-3-2 to a 4-3-1-2.  “With the graduation of eight seniors in the spring, we have been looking for a formation that makes the best use of our current players,” coach Hill explained.  “This formation gave us a stronger defensive set, while putting three forwards into the play to boost our scoring.  The formation is a little weak in the midfield, so we expect to have less possession, but should be able to counter attack effectively.”

Only nine minutes into the match, Aaron Feigum received a through ball from fellow senior Genaro Contreras Mondragon.  Feigum ran by a Johnnie defender before slashing a left-footed shot into the Prep goal for the first goal of the game.

SJP took over from there, scoring three-straight goals over a four-minutes span to go up 3-1.  

Contreras Mondragon halted the SJP scoring spree with another goal for the Lakers in the 30th minute with the assist going to Nelson.  “Blake (Nelson) made a great run down the right side,” Hill said.  “He penetrated to within about two yards of the goal line, then hit a cut-back pass flat to Genaro.  Genaro made great contact with the pass, giving the Prep keeper no chance of making a save.”

In the second half, Jose Contreras Mondragon tied it up in the 67th minute, off a feed from Connor Quelle, and the score stayed that way through the end of regulation.  The Lakers threatened to win the match in regulation as a shot by Quelle rattled off the crossbar in the final 10 minutes, but regulation eventually ended in a 3-3 tie, forcing two five-minute overtime periods.

With only three minutes left in overtime, the Lakers scored the gamewinner as Nelson, the leading scorer for the Lakers so far this season, received a through-pass from Quelle and side-stepped two defenders before finding an open spot low and far bar for the game-winner.

The Lakers outshot the visitors 14-6 with Tenzin Dahl making three saves for the home team and the SJP goalie making 10 saves.

“We played better defense in the second half.  In fact, we played some of our best defense of the season, outshooting SJP 11-1 in the second half,” coach Hills said.  “Overall, it was good for us psychologically and physically to pick up the win.  We had played well in our first three matches, but had been very inconsistent.  This is what you could expect from a young team.  We have two very tough matches to finish the week, and this win will help us going into those tough contests.”

SC Cath 3, Minnewaska 0

The Lakers were shut out for the second time this season with a 3-0 loss at St. Cloud Cathedral, Thursday night. St. Cloud went up 2-0 after one half and got its third goal on a penalty kick late in the second half.

The Laker defense did a good job in keeping the score low as SCC had 17 shots on goal compared to eight for the Lakers.  Minnewaska goalie Tenzin Dahl did a good job with 14 saves.

“We’ve got too many people hurt right now,” said coach Hill.  “The guys played very hard and we’re actually pretty happy with the result.”

at Minnewaska 4, SJP 3, ot

St. John’s Prep (1-2) 3 0 0 — 3

Minnewaska (1-3) 2 1 1 — 4

First half:  (1) Min-Aaron Feigum (Jenaro Contreras Mondragon) 9th minute . . . (2) SJP-Cole Butenhoff-Phillips 23rd minute . . . (3) SJP-Evan Danielson (free kick) 26th minute . . . (4) SJP-Eli Perry (Butenhoff-Phillips) 27th minute . . . (5) Min-Jenaro Contreras Mondragon (Blake Nelson) 30th minute

Second half:  (6) Min-Jose Contreras Mondragon (Connor Quelle) 67th minute

Overtime:  Min-Nelson (Feigum) 87th minute

Shots on goal:  SJP 6, Minnewaska 14

Goalie saves:  Tenzin Dahl, Min 3 saves; Daniel Huang, SJP 10 saves

at SC Cathedral 3, Minnewaska 0

Minnewaska (1-4) 0 0 — 0

SC Cathedral (4-0) 2 1 — 3

First half:  (1) SCC-Jack Stang (Joseph Torborg) 19th minute . . . (2) SCC-Lucas Hanson (Connor Stockman) 35th minute

Second half:  (3) SCC-Torborg (penalty kick) 78th minute

Shots on goal:  Minnewaska 8, SCC 17

Goalie saves:  Tenzin Dahl, Min 14 saves; Thomas Bosman, SCC 3 saves