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Tigers get the win in first clash with Tualatin

Boys lacrosse: Tigard moves to 3-0 in North Valley play with its 15-3 win over the Wolves
by: DAN BROOD, CLASH OF THE RIVALS — Tualatin’s Josh Galbreath (5) and Tigard’s Jonathan Langvin battle for possession of the ball in Tuesday’s match.

TIGARD - In its first-ever game against rival Tualatin, the Tigard High boys lacrosse team wanted to get off to a strong start.

Wow, did the Tigers ever meet that goal.

Tigard, grabbed a 1-0 lead just 9 seconds into the contest and never looked back as it scored a 15-3 win over the Timberwolves in a North Valley Division game played Tuesday at Tigard.

'We really wanted to play them,' Tigard senior attacker Robbie McLellarn said. 'It was cool, fun and exciting.'

With the win, Tigard improved to 3-0 in North Valley League play (5-3 overall), keeping the Tigers in first place in the league standings.

'We've really picked it up in league,' McLellarn said. 'We started the preseason strong, then we stumbled a bit, now we're going again.'

'Our goal right now is to go unbeaten the rest of the league season,' Tigard coach Grant Phillips said.

Tualatin, playing in its first season at the varsity level, fell to 0-3 in league games (2-5 overall) with the setback.

'They played hard the whole way,' Phillips said of the Timberwolves. 'And they're a real classy team.'

In their match with the Wolves, the Tigers were hoping to get off to a fast start. Sophomore midfielder Jonathan Langvin made that happen for Tigard as, after controlling the opening face off, he scored just 9 seconds into the game, giving the Tigers a quick 1-0 lead.

'We were a little worried coming in because we've come out slow sometimes,' McLellarn said. 'So that got us all pumped up.'

'Jonathan has probably won 85 to 90 percent of his face offs already this year,' Phillips said.

Less than a minute later, senior attacker Brendan Saunders scored to give Tigard a 2-0 lead with 10 minutes and 52 seconds to play in the first quarter.

Saunders scored two more times in the first quarter, with one of the goals coming off an assist from McLellarn, who also scored in the period to give Tigard a 5-0 lead going into the second.

Sophomore Dillon Grover, Langvin, senior Jake Ostrow and Saunders all had goals for Tigard in the second quarter, giving the Tigers a 9-0 lead at halftime.

The Tigers got their 10th goal on a shot by senior Jared Atkins coming with 8 minutes and 2 seconds to play in the third quarter.

While the offense was doing its part, the Tigard defense, including seniors Roland Mason and Jason Park and sophomore Sam Vogel, among others, and junior goalkeeper Gino Valenziano was keeping Tualatin from scoring. The Wolves didn't get a goal during Valenziano's 28 minutes of action.

'He's something else,' McLellarn said. 'He makes some crazy saves in practice and carries that over to the games.'

Tualatin, after Tigard went up 11-0 on a goal by McLellarn, got on the scoreboard when Tom DeMent scored from 15 yards away coming with 6:55 to play in the third quarter.

Jerek Laursen scored for the Wolves, off an assist from Will Pierce, to make it two goals in a row for Tualatin, which cut the lead to 11-2 with 5:06 left in the third quarter.

McLellarn scored off an assist from Saunders with 1:24 to play in the third quarter to give Tigard a 12-2 lead going into the final stanza.

McLellarn, Saunders and senior Ben Murphy each had a goal for Tigard in the fourth quarter. The Wolves got a goal from Josh Galbreath in the period to make the final score 15-3.

'Not bad,' Phillips said. 'The defense was fantastic.'

Saunders led Tigard with five goals in the victory and McLellarn added four goals.

For Tualatin, goalie Austin Coupe' made 14 saves.

The win was Tigard's third straight. On Friday, the Tigers posted a 10-9 overtime victory over South Salem with sophomore Travis Horton scoring the game-winning goal.

Tigard and Tualatin will both be back in action later this week. The Tigers will host West Salem at 8 p.m. on Friday while Tualatin will play at Clackamas Saturday at 7:30 p.m.