YOUTH LACROSSE: Gold Country Stampede crushes Napa in first round of playoffs | TheUnion.com
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YOUTH LACROSSE: Gold Country Stampede crushes Napa in first round of playoffs

Gold Country Stampede player Dannon Ivey takes the ball upfield during a playoff game against Napa Saturday at Hooper Stadium.
Walter Ford/wford@theunion.com |

The Gold Country Stampede continued its impressive run toward a Northern California Junior Lacrosse Association Championship Saturday, crushing the Napa Force, 18-4, in the first round of the playoffs.

The undefeated and No. 1 seed Stampede (15-0) barreled through No. 8 seed Napa, scoring at will in front of the home crowd at Hooper Stadium.

“It was good for us to be able to open our offense up,” said Stampede coach Greg Porter after the win. “We got to spread our wings a little today, work on our transition game, scored over 15 goals, let less than five in so all my desires were met today. The kids played a good game, we did what we needed to and now its on to the next game.”



The Stampede didn’t take long to get things going against the Force, scoring early and often. Senior midfielder Peter McDowell got the scoring started when he scooped up the ball, went coast-to-coast and fired it into the net. McDowell finished the game with five goals and three assists.

Toran Maronic made it 2-0 after he skipped the ball past the Napa goalie. Maronic added another when he circled around the goal and slotted the ball into the top of the net. Maronic finished with three goals and led the team with six assists. Drew Heaps made the score 4-0 with a scoop in front of the net which he quickly rifled past the Napa goalie. Heaps would lead the team with six goals, four of which came in the second quarter.




In all the Stampede got goals from seven different players. Dannon Ivey, Alex Abreu, Jackson Sanders and Jimmy Vaughn all scored goals in addition to McDowell, Maronic and Heaps. Vaughn is traditionally a defensive player, but in the fourth quarter the powerful senior went on the offensive and netted a goal much to the joy of his team.

Defensively, the Stampede was staunch, allowing just four goals. Goalie Kennen Beall made five saves in the win.

“It was a good run for us,” said Porter. “Certainly a mismatch of skill levels with the teams, No. 1 seed against the eight seed. Napa’s a club that’s building a good program, this was the first year they made the playoffs and I commend them for that. They played a nice game today.”

The Stampede will now face the No. 4 seed Chico Rebels at home Saturday in the semifinals. Gold Country and Chico have met twice this season with the Stampede taking both games. In the other semifinal, No. 2 seed Oakland Tech faces off with No. 3 seed Folsom.

JV: Pleasant Grove 15, Gold Country 2

The Gold Country Stampede JV team was knocked out of the playoffs Saturday after falling to Pleasant Grove.

Only scoring two goals the entire game, nothing seemed to go the Stampede’s way from the moment they arrived.

From the refs, to the field conditions to the average game play, it just wasn’t in the cards for the young Stampede team.

“Very tough way to end the season,” coach Dave Maronic explained after the loss. “We got beat in every facet of the game. I have to tip my hat to our opponents, they wanted it more than we did and they were just a better team today. When the captains were called and I saw which refs we drew, I knew it was gonna be 10 on 12. I got 4 minutes of penalties on one player in the first half and had my top scorer knocked out when a ref declared concussion but no call for the hit to the head. It’s really tough to be competitive with a man down all day. We went down 6-1 and we just couldn’t survive the great play of Pleasant Grove. I really do hope they go on to win it all, as I believe they are the best overall team in the league. Their goalie was exceptional and they deserved to win. Congrats to them but we will be back next year ready to roll.”

— Submitted to The Union

U15: Gold Country 8, El Dorado Hills 5

The U15 Stampede finished up their regular season with a win against El Dorado Hills.

Missing a couple of key players did not hamper Gold Country’s efforts. The offense had standout performances by brothers Millen and Mason Zimmerman, Colton Coughran, Cody Ray, and Tanner Takahashi all contributing to the total eight goals scored.

The Stampede defense did its job and made things tough for El Dorado. Anchoring the defense was Eric Chastain, Sam Walker, Jack Blair, and Matt Hansen. Stampede goalie, Jeremy Rodriguez, had three saves in this game and has become an excellent defender of the goal. The Stampede had a successful winning year at 9-5 and came in third in league play.

“Summing up the season, I am proud of the fact that our team just kept getting stronger as the season went on,” said coach Michael Takahashi. “Our boys really do love the game of lacrosse and have learned to grow and work together as a team, all while respecting the game and showing good sportsmanship at the same time. It has truly been an honor to be a part of this team and be given the chance to work with such a great group of boys.”

Gold Country travels to Danville for a final tournament this Saturday.

— Submitted to The Union

U13: Stampede wraps season against El Dorado Hills

The Gold Country Stampede U13 team competed in their final game of the season facing off with the El Dorado Hills Trojans Saturday.

The Stampede was strong on both ends of the field with many blocks and saves by goalie Luke Peevey and his D-team including Gerik Meyers, Harrison Stidham and Ryan Watts.

The offense pushed hard with solid performances by Chance Bacon, Garrett Wells and Lincoln Pratt, with shots on goals by Reese Bacon, Kaden Fredericks, Meyers, Sean Cullers and Connor Vaughn.

Goals were scored by Connor Trujillo with assists by Cullers and Peevey.

— Submitted to The Union


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