Blue Ridge’s boys lacrosse team has been on the wrong end of some tough battles this year, with five of the Barons’ seven total losses coming in one-goal games.
But since the calendar flipped to May, No. 9-ranked Blue Ridge has gotten a chance to build some serious momentum ahead of the VISAA Division I playoffs. The Barons extended their current win streak to five-straight in the last nine days with a 10-5 victory over North Cross, the No. 2-ranked school in VISAA’s Division II in Wednesday’s VIC championship game.
With a hat trick by Kayle Ryan leading the way and two goals each by Fort Carden and Ace Nichols, Blue Ridge had enough offense going to make a strong defensive effort stand up against the Raiders. Nichols was in on half the Barons’ goals as he dished out three assists on the day, including two to Ryan. Evan Foster and Matt Niznik had a goal and an assist each with Niznik starting the scoring early in the first quarter.
Blue Ridge built a 3-0 lead before North Cross got on the board late in the first quarter. They maintained that advantage much of the game and led 7-4 going into the fourth. Three goals in the final frame allowed the Barons to slam the door shut and pick up the trophy.
Cam Wheelans picked up a team high four ground balls. Blue Ridge was excellent on faceoffs, with a 17-2 advantage over North Cross and they were also efficient, scoring the 10 goals with just 20 shots.
The Barons now await the VISAA’s Division I pairings for this Saturday’s first round games. Blue Ridge is likely to go on the road, but if the pairings were set on this week’s rankings, they’d just have a short trip over to Woodberry Forest for a rematch of early April’s 11-10 double overtime game between the two programs.