A high-powered offense appears to be the key for Cretin-Derham Hall as its winning percentage continues to grow.
The Raiders offense has scored at least 15 goals in each of their seven wins on the season’s schedule, with the latest example being an 18-8 win Wednesday at Suburban East Conference opponent East Ridge.
A glance at the state leaderboard showed midfielders Sofia Watts and Jordin Rosga each appeared in the top-five list of goal scorers heading into Wednesday’s game. But the Raiders will tell you an offense that is averaging more than 15 goals per game relies on more than just two players to get the job done.
Sophomore Jane Stangler (10) and Junior Maggie Pape (4) put pressure on each other moving up the field. Pape scored three goals for the Raptors during the game. Shannon Brault, SportsEngine
Photo gallery: Cretin-Derham Hall vs. East Ridge
“There are players who might not show up statistically but are impacting what we are doing on the offensive end, and giving Sofia and giving (Jordin) opportunities to put the ball in the net,” said head coach Jeff Rosga.
Jeff Rosga, who is the father of Jordin Rosga, is in his first season as the head coach of the Raiders after previously coaching Two Rivers/Gentry Academy. For the players, there was a transition phase early in the season as a new coaching staff got started, but heading into the second half of the season the process is coming to an end.
“It was hard to adjust, but I feel like we’ve grown as a team and welcomed them in,” said Watts, who scored six goals and added four assists in Wednesday’s win.
The first year Cretin-Derham Hall coach knew the transition would require some buy-in from the returning players on the roster. He has relied on the team’s seniors, specifically naming Josie Nei, Anna Stangler, and Maggie Plante, for helping with the process.
“I asked them as I was being hired last winter about, ‘Hey, players form the culture,’” recalled Jeff Rosga. “And they have just been amazing leaders as seniors with a new coach, a new system, everything.”
The hard work early in the season has helped Cretin-Derham Hall move to the cusp of the top-10 of the Minnesota Girls' Lacrosse Coaches Association state polls. With just four games remaining until section tournaments begin in late May, the Raiders hope hard work will pay off in the short Spring season.
“We want to better in June than we were in April when the season started, that has sort of been the mantra of things,” Jeff Rosga said. “We want to continue to develop, continue to grow, continue to get better each and every week.”
East Ridge's Katrina Vaseliadis (24) and CDH's Jordin Rosga (21) go for the ball during Wednesday's game. Rosga scored four goals during the game. Shannon Brault, SportsEngine