HIGHLIGHTS: Bemidji Boys Open Conference Play With Eight-Goal Showing

A hat-trick from Isaac Stone and several first-time varsity goalscorers sent Bemidji boys soccer to a dominant 8-0 victory over Crookston on Monday afternoon at the Bemidji Middle School.

The Lumberjacks had scored just eight goals combined in their first five recorded matches of the season entering Monday, but started hitting the back of the net early and often behind methodical build-up play in possession. Such play produced a corner that failed to be adequately dealt with by the Pirates, giving Stone the chance to swivel and convert the opening goal of the afternoon after just six minutes.

Jacks senior Noah Meyer had returned from injury to appear in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Denfeld, but had the opportunity to make his goalscoring mark with Bemidji for the first time in the 10th minute against Crookston. Lincoln Schmitt split the back line with a through ball that Meyer latched on to before producing a finish into the roof of the net.

Stone tallied his second goal of the afternoon just two minutes later with another left-footed drive past Pirates keeper Blake Melsa on a setup by Nick Rautio.

While Meyer had produced goals at the varsity level previously for Detroit Lakes, it was a first-time varsity scorer who would be next to find the net for the Lumberjacks in the 27th minute. A low corner delivery was helped on by Waylon Puschinsky into the path of Austin Riewer, who swept in a first-time finish to increase the lead to 4-0.

Rautio brought the lead to 5-0 just before halftime with a tidy finish from the edge of the area from a Meyer pass.

The recent goalscoring exploits of Brady Riley–who had tallied equalizers against Grand Rapids and Duluth Denfeld to help the Jacks earn draws–continued for Bemidji’s sixth goal of the afternoon: a close-range strike on Meyer’s cutback from the end line.

Replicating his hat-trick of a year ago against Crookston, Stone completed his three-goal performance under odd circumstances in the 66th minute after a hurried punt from Melsa was intercepted by Marian Staengle. His quick feed to Stone led to a drilled strike beyond the backpeddling Melsa.

The Lumberjacks were denied another first-ever varsity goal minutes later when Ben Fraunholtz’s penalty kick was saved by Melsa, but fellow senior Harris Barry completed the scoreline with his own inaugural goal after a ball from Stone played him through.

Bemidji outshot Crookston 23-2 for the afternoon, with Kellen Heuer making both saves for his second clean sheet of the season.

The Lumberjacks (3-2-2) will next visit Section 8AAA rival Moorhead on Thursday for a 6pm match.