As far as openers go, Mullen has seen better.
The Mustangs, in their beginning match in the new Season D, were handled 15-3 in boys lacrosse on Wednesday evening at Brother Bernard Kinneavy Field at De La Salle Stadium.
A nonleaguer, it was an eye-opener for the younger Mustangs, many of whom got their first taste of Class 5A play and competing in a stadium setting.
Introduction to the bright lights was replaced by a pleasant evening, a pitch that screamed green and a sunset that closed a lesson. Monarch was 11th in preseason rankings and certainly played like it.
“We got smoked,” Mullen head coach Matt Cawley said.
It happens, the former Mustangs player knows, as this 2021 season, chock full of good competition now over two classes, will be a learning process for a roster that contains just a half-dozen seniors, only one that was on the starting front line. And it was the first match for Mullen in two years and two days, having beaten Eaglecrest 5-3 on March 3, 2019.
“That’s a long time,” Cawley said in referring to 2020’s lost season due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. “But we got outplayed.”
It was just 1-1 after the first quarter before the Coyotes ran off eight goals in the second, five in a quick binge.
“It got away from us,” Cawley said, also pointing to his team’s unsuccessful face-offs. The Coyotes would score, then follow with another after quickly regaining control. They also had success against the Mullen defense, running patterns and passing, and peppering the Mullen goal with shots.
Five different Coyotes found the back of the net.
The Mustangs Connor Warren contributed a goal and an assist. Keegan Quinn and Nicky Bond added goals and Chris Bougie an assist.
Cawley said his guys were tested, they have to be able to respond and will go again on Friday, May 7, 6 p.m., with another nonleaguer, this one at the newer Northfield.
MONARCH 15, MULLEN 3
Monarch 1 8 5 1 -- 15
Mullen 1 0 1 1 -- 3
Mullen goals – Connor Warren, Keegan Quinn, Nicky Bond.
Mullen assists – Connor Warren, Chris Bougie.