Green Wave spoils DL girls home opener

Laker defender Sasha Sekundiak heads a ball at midfield during the home opener against East Grand Forks Thursday, Sept. 1 at Rotary Soccer Park. Robert Williams / Tribune

Detroit Lakes renewed a testy playoff rivalry with East Grand Forks in the second game of the season and the Green Wave shut out the Lakers 4-0 in front of senior keeper Kadynn Melquist Tuesday, Sept. 1 at Rotary Soccer Park.

The Green Wave had a less than ideal start when senior standout and captain Chloe Torgerson left the game minutes in with a knee injury.

Nearing the midway point of the first half, Green Wave senior midfielder Grace Kronlund had a free kick from 35 yards out with the wind and found space near the crossbar sending the shot just above the outreached hands of Laker freshman keeper Elle Bettcher for a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute.

Detroit Lakes played into gusting southwest winds in the opening 40 minutes, while the Green Wave had it at their backs.

“They had a lot of good opportunities shooting the ball,” said DL head coach Ben Aastuen. “We actually had more opportunities than they did but they were just putting them a way - they’re a good shooting team, so we have some things to work on.”


After turning away a corner kick, the Lakers got some offensive pressure against Melquist with Maddie Bowers forcing a diving save on a solid shot and Grace Gunderson pushing toward the net but her shot ended up on top of the twine, rather than in it.

Ava Jones had Kate Stearns at the EGF goal mouth but Melquist was there to smother the pass and not let Stearns have shot at a wide open net.

East Grand charged back upfield, earning a second corner and that kick floated in front of the net forcing Bettcher to come out of the net creating a melee in front as a loose ball turned into an excellent scoring chance that was negated by DL defender Clara Lundmark defending dead center of the net.

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East Grand Forks forwards celebrate one of four Green Wave goals in a shutout victory over Detroit Lakes at Rotary Soccer Park Tuesday night. Robert Williams / Tribune

A big rebound bounced between players and was corralled by EGF sophomore midfielder Kara Ellis, who buried the goal for a 2-0 lead with less than two minutes remaining before halftime.

Detroit Lakes (1-1) had three shots on goal in the first half.

The wind switched to the west at halftime and died a bit in the second half not allowing the Lakers the same advantage East Grand Forks had.


Kate Stearns made an early bid to get on the board out of the halftime break but her shot was wide. Abby Larson followed up with a scoring chance but her shot was also wide of the goal.

Detroit Lakes had the majority of possession in the offensive end but was unable to beat Melquist.

Ellis extended the visitor’s cushion 10 minutes in by beating Bettcher to the right side of the net on a penalty kick for a 3-0 lead.

Jones and Stearns had another opportunity midway through the second half but could not connect.

A Kronlund free kick from her own half of the field found a streaking Skyla Rustad who got loose and beat Bettcher for a 4-0 lead and the final tally of the game.

Senior defender Sasha Sekundiak played in her first game for the Lakers and was strong in the defensive end and in transition.

“Sasha is a very talented athlete,” said Aastuen. “We have a very talented defense that I’m really impressed with every day. East Grand Forks had a very good attacking mechanism that chipped it over our defense and kind of caught us on our heels so our speed wasn’t as big of a factor as it has been.”

East Grand Forks (1-0) has won four straight games against the Lakers. DL’s last win in the series was a 2-0 playoff win at home in October of 2018. The teams will meet two more times this season.

Robert Williams has been a sports editor for Forum Communications in Perham and Detroit Lakes since 2011.
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