LAKEWOOD — For the first time in nearly a decade, boys lacrosse returned to Lakewood Memorial Field on Wednesday night.

Lakewood Memorial Field will host more than 60 varsity girls soccer games this spring season. For the first time since March 2016 the historic field at 10th and Wadsworth, it was all about boys lacrosse with a tripleheader of action.

“It’s cool. It’s a little different, but it’s got a good vibe to it,” Poudre School District senior Colton Pawlak said of LMF. “It brings me back to my childhood. Playing on grass. Playing at the park. It’s cool.”

Fittingly, Lakewood hosted two-time defending Class 5A League #2 champion — Poudre School District Stars — to start the three games at LMF. Poudre is coached by 2005 Lakewood High School graduate Will Cantwell who played lacrosse for Golden High School and is still the Demons’ career leading goal scorer.

Photo by Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Public Schools

“As a Lakewood native, it’s pretty cool to play on this field,” Cantwell said. “It’s one of the last places with grass. It’s nice to play on grass. It’s a nice venue. Very happy to be here for sure.”

Poudre grabbed an 8-1 victory over Lakewood. It was the fourth straight victory for the Stars (6-4, 2-0 in league). Pawlak led the way with three goals for PSD as the Stars look to go undefeated in conference play for the third straight year.

“We’ve gone back-to-back. Obviously, we want to do it again,” Pawlak said. “We are just looking to the next step ahead. We don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves.”

Lakewood (2-8, 0-2) has dropped six games in a row, but the Tigers showed positive signs against PSD. After trailing 6-1 at halftime, Lakewood allowed just two goals in the second half.

“To hold (Poudre) to two goals in the second half was great,” Lakewood coach Darin Denton said. “We have some great plays by individuals. As soon as we put it all together for four quarters we are going to be a force.”

The Tigers are a young squad that is anchored by junior goalie Ethan Branscom. Sophomore Murphy Shanley scored the lone goal for Lakewood in the loss.

“We are really young,” Denton said. “We have a bright future for sure. It seems like every week we are learning, but the other teams are learning too.”

PSD is clearly focused on the now and winning another league title despite graduating seven starters from last year’s squad that advanced to the 5A state semifinals.

“That is our sole focus,” Cantwell said of the Stars winning a third straight league title. “We got off to a tough start playing some of the best teams in the state. We always want to measure ourselves against them. We know we have aways to go.”

The Stars took losses to Valor Christian, Cherry Creek and Grandview before going into league play.

Cantwell, who was also Lakewood’s starting varsity quarterback for four years on the Tigers’ football team two decades ago, is excited to bring his lacrosse team to Jeffco Stadium in a few weeks.

“It is defintely a little bit nostalgic for me for sure. It feels a bit full-circle,” Cantwell said about his team playing at Jeffco Stadium against Chatfield coming up May 3 in the Stars’ league finale. “I always thought you should play lacrosse at Jeffco Stadium. It’s such a cool venue. I’m looking forward to that.”

Photo by Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Public Schools

Columbine 8, Fairview 3

In the second game, Columbine got a much-needed 8-3 victory over Fairview.

The Rebels (4-6, 1-1) had dropped their league opener to Monarch last week.

“This was a really big win for us, especially after the loss against Monarch,” Columbine senior Chase Pacenta said. “It fired up the guys a little bit. It was good for us.”

Columbine and Fairview (3-5, 1-2) were tied 3-3 early in the second quarter, but the Rebels outscored the Knights 5-0 for the remainder of the game to take the win.

“We have a special group and seniors and they fought hard,” Columbine coach Nick Lewis said. “It was Senior Night tonight and we told them to go out there and not let any setbacks outweigh their passion. Their passion won tonight.”

The Rebels’ defense was outstanding shutting out Fairview in the second half. Columbine senior goalie Max Stadelmaier got the win in net for the Rebels.

“Max is outstanding. I’ve got a great defensive coordinator in his dad, Marty Stadelmaier,” Lewis said. “We’ve got great leaders down there with Cruz Maynes, Elijah Lamb, Trey Minch and Reilly Bruzas. Those are four really, really good defenders.”

Pacenta, senior Spencer Houle and freshman Lucas Gwinner all had two goals each in the victory. Pacenta was also a big fan of the natural grass playing surface of LMF.

“I like the grass. It’s soft,” Pacenta said. “It is nice on my knees. It’s nicer on the body.”

Columbine has another big conference game against Poudre School District to wrap up the week.

“Ton of respect for Poudre and Will Cantwell, a great coach and a good guy,” Lewis said of the Rebels facing the Stars up in Fort Collins on Friday. “We’ll see what happens.”

The final game at LMF on the night featured a massive comeback win for Dakota Ridge. The Eagles trailed Evergreen 6-3 at halftime. Dakota Ridge outscored seven unanswered goals in the second half to pull out a 10-6 victory.