Backed by a first defensive clean sheet of the season and a three-goal outing from senior Jacob Stanoch, Bemidji boys soccer notched back-to-back victories for the first time this year with a 5-0 defeat of Detroit Lakes in a Lakes to Prairie Conference matchup on Tuesday at the Bemidji Middle School.
After going behind Saturday in an eventual 4-3 extra time victory against Duluth Denfeld, an early goal helped the Lumberjacks settle into their matchup with the Lakers. Bo Hofstad swung in a left-footed cross that was met by an expertly taken header from Reed Johnson to put Bemidji ahead 1-0 in just the fifth minute.
The lead was doubled only four minutes later by a combination between the forward tandem of Isaac Stone and Stanoch. Stone popped up on the left flank in similar fashion to the buildup to the opening goal, providing a delivery for Stanoch to win off the Detroit Lakes’ defense before slotting past goalkeeper Evan Thomas.
The Lakers responded to the 2-0 deficit with some threatening passages of play, working the flanks before putting pressure on the middle that called Connor Helm into making a parried stop on a header from Noah Meyer.
Stanoch doubled his tally in the 24th minute when Brady Riley became the latest Lumberjack to attack the left flank and serve a cross for the senior to control and finish.
Bemidji’s 3-0 lead was carried through to halftime, then added to in the 43rd minute on Stanoch’s highly sought after third goal–which was once again provided by a helper from Stone.
Two providers on first half goals teamed up to cap the scoring in the 60th minute. After his first cross was blocked back to him, Riley swung another delivery into the box from the right to find Hofstad for a well-placed strike to the corner.
The Lumberjacks’ defense carried the 5-0 result the rest of the way to notch their first shutout of the season, with Helm stopping three shots in the victory.
Bemidji (4-3) will next host Section 8AAA rival Moorhead on Thursday at 7pm at Chet Anderson Stadium.