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Boys lacrosse: Irish go down to wire with Minnetonka

Rosemount came up just short in a battle between two of the top lacrosse teams in the state Saturday in Minnetonka.

The second-ranked Skippers surged to a 9-3 halftime lead, then had to hold on as the fifth-rated Irish fought all the way back to within a goal before falling, 13-12.

"We weren't united and we came out flat-footed and made selfish plays in the first half," Rosemount coach Lance Kuehn said. "In the second half we changed our personnel, played as a team and got ourselves back into the game. It was a really exciting game."

Despite the loss, Kuehn said the final score showed just how far the Rosemount program has come in its six years of existence.

"They've had lacrosse for over 10 years. They're established and we've now surpassed our program's infancy as conference champs (last season). Now instead of playing teams we can beat 22-1, we're playing elite teams. We would have been happier with a W, but this game showed our team's willingness to never give up," he said. "Now the focus for our team is to play like we did in the fourth quarter. If we can do that, we'll be pretty close to unstoppable."

During that quarter, the Irish outscored the Skippers 6-2. Their final goal made it 13-12 with less than two minutes to go, but the home team was able to retain possession and run the clock out on a victory.

"Another minute and I think we would have come away with the win," Kuehn said. "We won 90 percent of the face-offs in the fourth quarter and that gave us seven more possessions. When you do that you're bound to score more, and that's what we did."

Grant VanOverbeke once again led the Irish offensively with four goals. Carter Yepsen and Matt Weller each added two goals and three assists and Conner Yepsen scored twice and handed out one assist.

Sam Richardville and Chris Peterson each scored single goals.

Chase Olson took the loss in goal, stopping 12 Minnetonka shots while allowing all 13 goals.

The Irish (1-1) traveled to Burnsville Tuesday and play their home opener tomorrow night against Woodbury.

"They're another team we wanted to schedule as a measuring stick, to see how we stack up against one of the top east teams," Kuehn said.