Aaron Feigum (9) and Genaro Contreras Mondragon (left) were among the keys to the Lakers’ 7-0 win over Melrose last week.  Feigum had four goals and Mondragon added three assists.

The Minnewaska Area boys soccer team scored seven goals during a 7-0 victory over Melrose Area, Thursday night at home.  Aaron Feigum had four of those goals and Blake Nelson added two, while Genaro Mondragon was credited with three assists.

The Lakers also shut out Pelican Rapids, 1-0, in a game played Saturday, Sept. 10 and fell to Little Falls in a close Granite Ridge match last Tuesday, 2-1.

Overall, the Lakers are 3-5 this season, including a 2-2 mark in the Granite Ridge Conference.

Minnewaska Area has two more games scheduled for this week, beginning with a game at Zimmerman, Tuesday (tomorrow), and a game at St. John’s Prep, Thursday.

Lakers 1, Pelican Rapids 0

Minnewaska played its third game of the week, Saturday, Sept. 10, hosting Pelican Rapids.  The Vikings entered the match with a record of 1-2 after playing for the Section 8A title last October.  

The Lakers and the Vikings were both short-handed entering the match as each side had starters on the bench nursing injuries. 

Minnewaska Area earned a 1-0 victory thanks to the late-game heroics of Jose and Genaro Contreras Mondragon.  

Most of the match was marked by stubborn defense and solid possession by the Lakers.  Laker backs Noah Palmer, Ethan Curry and Thomas Poegel limited good opportunities by Pelican Rapids to only four shots for the game.

The Minnewaska holding midfielders filled gaps defensively and started the attack into the final third.  “I really couldn’t be any happier with our back six players right now,” coach Ted Hill said.  “Noah, Ethan, Thomas, along with our holding mids Connor Quelle and Blake Nelson, are really playing well as a unit.  Keeper Tenzin Dahl is also getting better with each performance and recorded his first shut-out of the season.”

In addition to the solid defensive effort, the Lakers’ midfield and forwards launched 12 shots for the match against Vikings senior keeper Arturo Zavala.  Forwards Aaron Feigum, Ryan Gresseth and Genaro Contreras Mondragon pressured the Viking defense throughout the match.  

This pressure led to the winning goal for the Lakers with only 7 minutes left in the match.  Pelican Rapids’ defender Daniel Diaz, under heavy pressure, attempted to play a ball up the middle of the field.  Laker junior Jose Contreras Mondragon intercepted the pass and immediately hit Genaro Contreras Mondragon with a lightning through ball.  Genaro side-stepped two Viking defenders before ripping a shot past a diving Zavala to give the Lakers the late lead.  

Minnewaska would alter their formation from that point on, dropping another player into the holding midfield position. Pelican Rapids would send everything forward in the final seven minutes of the match, but Minnewaska held on for their second win of the week and season.  

Little Falls 2, Waska 1

Little Falls scored the first two goals and then held on for a 2-1 victory over Minnewaska Area last Tuesday at Little Falls. The home team scored at the 19th and 50th minutes to go up 2-0, but Blake Nelson cut the gap to 2-1 with a goal in the 58th minute, assisted by Aaron Feigum. No other balls hit the back of the net the rest of the way as Little Falls earned the 2-1 victory, despite being outshot 12-6.

Tenzin Dahl stopped four shots in net for the Lakers, while Little Falls’ Ethan Yourek stopped 11 shots in net for the Flyers.

“We didn’t play exceptionally well and they didn’t play exceptionally well either, to be honest,” said coach Hill.  “We hit the post with our next shot after our goal, which would have tied it up, but those things happen.”

Minnewaska 7, Melrose 0

The Lakers scored early and often during a 7-0 home victory over Melrose, Thursday night on Veterans’ Field at MAHS.

The Lakers outshot the visitors 25-2 with Tenzin Dahl making both saves for the victors.  “We switched our formations for the fifth time this season and really worked on finishing drills in practice (Wednesday),” coach Hill said.  “It helped us get more confidence in getting to the net.  We hit the post eight times, more times than their keeper had saves.”

Blake Nelson scored the game’s first goal in the 11th minute of play and Aaron Feigum made it 2-0 with a goal eight minutes later.  Genaro Mondragon was credited with assists on both goals.

Feigum scored his second goal at the 30th minutes, assisted by Connor Erickson, to put the Lakers up 3-0 by halftime.  There would be plenty of more goals in the second half.

Feigum got his hattrick in the 45th minute of play, with Nelson earning the assist, and then Nelson got his second goal of the game in the 50th minute in a score set up by Dalton Peterson.

“Blake (Nelson) has grown both physically and in his maturity as a player,” coach Hill said.  “He is hardworking and a very coachable player. He has provided us with goals the past two seasons and has continued that goal production in 2022.”

Feigum and Mondragon teamed up again for another goal in the 61st minute of play, and Connor Quelle ended the scoring spree for the Lakers with a goal in the 66th minute, assisted by Jackson Holmes.

“Aaron (Feigum) is a student of the game and technically a very sound player,” coach Hill said.  “He grew into the speed of the game at the varsity level last season and was a big contributor to our on-field success.  He provides valuable leadership for a young squad and is having a great season.”

at Little Falls 2, Waska 1

Minnewaska (2-5) 0 1 — 1

Little Falls (3-4) 1 1 — 2

First half:  (1) LF-Jake Schneider (Koda Brastad) 19th minute

Second half:  (2) LF-Garrett Lindbergh (Colton Johnson) 50th minute . . . (3) Min-Blake Nelson (Aaron Feigum) 58th minute

Shots on goal:  Minnewaska 12, Little Falls 6

Goalie saves:  Tenzin Dahl, Min 4 saves; Ethan Yourek, LF 11 saves

at Minnewaska 7, Melrose 0

Melrose (0-7) 0 0 — 0

Minnewaska (3-5) 3 4 — 7

First half:  (1) Min-Blake Nelson (Genaro Mondragon) 11th minute . . . (2) Min-Aaron Feigum (Mondragon) 19th minute . . . (3) Min-Feigum (Connor Erickson) 30th minute

Second half:  (4) Min-Feigum (Nelson) 45th minute . . . (5) Nelson (Dalton Peterson) 50th minute . . . (6) Min-Feigum (Mondragon) 61st minute . . . (7) Min-Connor Quelle (Jackson Holmes) 66th minute

Shots on goal:  Minnewaska 25, Melrose 2

Saves:  Tenzin Dahl, Min 2; Adan Lara Ambriz, Mel 18 saves