Vikings head coach Andy Wagner has high expectations when it comes to his Vikings lacrosse squad that finished third in the Pac-10 last season with a 9-5 record in league play.
Monday night’s matchup with the visiting Falcons was a great litmus test on how ready Wagmer’s young squad is to meet the lofty goals he and his staff have set.
However, the Vikings had no easy task dispatching of Pottsgrove, who rolled into Graterford with a bit of a collective chip on their shoulders from the memory of the drubbing they suffered at the hands of Perk Valley last season.
The Falcons battled the Vikings tooth and nail for 48 minutes, knotting the game at six apiece when D.J. Ludy beat Mike Filopanti on the short side. In fact, it took a goal by Dennis Flynn with 58 seconds left in regulation for Perkiomen Valley to emerge from the fray with a 7-6 Pac-10 win.
“We came in here and wanted to win very badly,” said Falcons attacker Danny Michaels, who scored twice and assisted on another goal. “They ran up the core on us pretty good last year, and we wanted to show that we haven’t forgotten it. This is one of those team that we have a history with. I thought we played really well as a team tonight.”
Perkiomen Valley rolled to a 4-0 lead on goals from Jake Lynn, Wes Johnson, Dave Duryea and Dennis Flynn before Matt Natale got the Falcons on the board with 49 seconds left in the first period.
“This was a big game for us,” said Andy Wagner. “We are still trying to find our identity. These kids are young, and this is the first time for them under the lights in this kind of a game. We got the win which was the most important thing, but I also think they learned a lot about themselves.”
Pottsgrove battled back to cut the Vikings lead to within one as the first half came to a close, prompting Wagner to call a timeout just before intermission.
“They always play us tough,” said Jake Lynn, who scored three goal on four shots. “I don’t know why but we have always had a thing with them. This was physical game tonight and I was happy with the way we kept fighting and didn’t let them take the lead.”
Lynn scored the first two goals for Perk Valley (1-1 league, 3-1 overall) in the second half, but Michaels’ second goal of the evening drew the feisty Falcons back to lead with one setting the stage for Ludy.
“Lacrosse is a game of momentum,” added Wagner. “It was so important for us to get that goal back right away after they tied it. It only takes one play and the entire momentum of a game can shift.”
Wagner called timeout immediately following Ludy’s game-tying goal to set up a play and clarify defensive assignments.
Almost as if on cue, Flynn worked his way into the slot and was in position to receive a pass from Wes Johnson, which Flynn one-timed into the Falcons net, sending the Vikings faithful into a frenzy.
“I just saw an opening and went to it,” said Flynn. “As soon I got in the slot, my good friend Wes, who I have played with forever, hit me perfectly. It feels great right now; this was a team we had to beat, especially at home.”
Some tense moments aside down the stretch, the Vikings played solid defense all night and got great work offensively from junior Ryan Boyd, sophomore Jamie Klementisz and Pete Sciafani.
“Dennis is that kind of player,” added Wagner. “He’s never going to overpower any one, but he is quick and has that dart move when he attacks the net, which makes him dangerous.”
Pottsgrove 1 2 2 1 - 6
Perk Valley 4 0 1 2 - 7