Despite the score not being favorable to Brainerd Monday, May 3, head coach Tina Nagel took a lot of positives from the 11-3 loss to Becker.
One of the positives was Brainerd striking first with a Brynne Folden goal to give the Warriors a 1-0 lead.
“We had to make an adjustment from our last game and that adjustment was immediately implemented,” Nagel said. “Certain changes need to be made obviously, however, that was a very impressive team we played against and a good growing experience for our team.”
The Becker Bulldogs answered with four straight to take control.
Megan Gamble scored the first of her four goals to put the Bulldogs on the scoreboard.
Adeline Kent, Emma Mathews and Jazlyn Toedter all scored within five minutes of each other to get Becker’s offense going.
“We needed this very badly,” Becker head coach Anicca Lundeen said. “We haven’t been playing our best and we came out and definitely showed that we have some athletic ability and we can work the ball down the field.”
Avery Mullholland tallied Brainerd’s second goal of the first half to make it 4-2.
“There are certain opportunities on our attack overall that I would like to see improve,” Nagel said.
Becker scored two goals within fifteen seconds of each other to make it 6-2 with four minutes left in the first half.
Lundeen admitted she was worried about coming in and playing Brainerd, who have allowed four goals or fewer in its three wins.
“We were nervous coming in because we have seen their record,” Lundeen said of Brainerd. “Our offense really showed up tonight. We were accurate and patient when we needed to be. We didn’t force goals like we have in the past. It felt good tonight.”
Camryn Ramola added a Bulldogs’ goal with two minutes left in the half and Becker led 7-2 at the break.
Nagel liked the way her team played defense in the second half allowing the Bulldogs to get four second-half goals.
“We got to see what really crisp cuts look like, with their feeds that were on point,” Nagel said of Becker’s offense. “So it was a really good experience for our defense to see and know how we need to play before the postseason.”
Three of Becker’s four goals in the second half came from Gamble who struck first in the first four minutes out of halftime.
“She is always strong,” Lundeen said of Gamble. “You never know what she is going to do with that ball. She gets inside and then goes behind her back, over her shoulder — she is definitely a threat and a weapon when she is on.”
Kaylin Peterson added another second-half goal for Becker at the 14:16 mark.
Breya Sawyer scored Brainerd’s lone second-half goal with 10:37 left and made the score 10-3.
“That was a really impressive team we played,” Nagel said. “Our girls fought the entire game and I was really proud of that. I think it was a really good experience for our girls. We need to work on our transition play a little bit, but otherwise, we held them to four goals in the second half and that is something that they should be proud of.”
Becker 7 4 — 11
Brainerd 2 1 — 3
First half: Brd-Brynne Folden 17:46, Beck-Megan Gamble 13:34, Beck-Adeline Kent 11:26, Beck-Emma Mathews 9:42, Beck-Jazlyn Toedter 7:31, Brd-Avery Mulholland 5:30, Beck-Adeline Kent 4:22, Beck-Faith Madsen 4:06, Beck-Camryn Ramola 2:00
Second half: Beck-Megan Gamble 21:02, Beck-Kaylin Peterson 14:16, Beck-Megan Gamble 11:58, Brd-Breya Sawyer 10:37, Beck-Megan Gamble 8:43
Overall: Brd 3-3. Next: Brainerd hosts Proctor/Hermantown 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 11.
CONRAD ENGSTROM may be reached at 218-855-5861 or email@example.com. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/the_rad34.