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Final seconds win for boys LAX



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April 30, 2014 - If your pacemaker was on the fritz Saturday afternoon and you were watching the Oxford Varsity Boys' Lacrosse team, you'd definitely have to visit your family doctor Monday morning.

The Wildcats scored with 10 seconds left in regulation to tie Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard at Adrian College and then won their fifth game and third straight in the second overtime when junior Scott Randall found the back of the net to secure a 10-9 victory over the Catholic League rival.

The back-and-forth battle lasted during the entire contest until Oxford won it late on Randall's goal, but the win solidified the Wildcat's 'culture,' and may have jumped started the team to bigger and better, according to the coaching staff.

"You didn't have to be a lacrosse fan to enjoy this opportunity today," said Greg Normand, Oxford's head coach. "We had a chance to play at Adrian College, watch the MIAA men's championship and then go overtime with a really good Catholic League team…….so, that's not a bad day," Normand said.

The third-year head coach said the win over the Irish might be the best win in program history.

"We've been looking for a jumping off point since I started here three years ago….my point is we've been looking for one of those games where our athletes just wanted to win more than they wanted to play well," Normand said.

"We played as hard as we have in two years, but mostly, they just willed themselves to match the competition and that's what makes me most proud. These young men just laid it all out and the end result wasn't a win over Gabriel Richard, but rather they found their team."

The nip-and-tuck contest featured a number of highlights as the teams exchanged goals and leads back and forth. But Oxford's faceoff control in the closing stages of the fourth quarter might have made the difference, Normand said.

"Give Austin (Kreshock) and Louie (Urban) for continuing to win faceoffs when they were tired," Normand said. "We won the faceoff advantage 15-12, but we were 4-1 late and that made all the difference in the world."

The Wildcats were led offensively by Scott Randall's four goals and one assist, while another Oxford attack, Lars Joergen-Kotate notched four goals and added an assist. Noah Grove (four assists) and Austin Kreshock (one goal – four assists) contributed to the Oxford offensive. Gavin Fritz added another goal.

But the big quest for victory Saturday afternoon was Oxford goalie Jared Tasch, who stopped 18 opponent's shots and many from his circus-style performance.

"The difference today was Jared……there's a reason he's an All-State goalie and today he showed why….we was tremendous," Normand said.

The win moves Oxford's record to 5-1.

The Wildcats are on the road Thursday at North Farmington and come home Friday night to entertain West Bloomfield at 7 p.m.

– Submitted to the Leader

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