LAKEWOOD — Trace Wollner was a little concerned about the infection in his knee after he got rubbed out on the turf at Trailblazer Stadium.
Of course, if having that ailment produced the kind of offense Wollner showed off May 1, the rest of the Chatfield Chargers might be thrilled to get sick.
Wollner scored seven goals and dished one assist, as the ninth-seeded Chargers hammered out a 10-5 victory over No. 24 Highlands Ranch in the first round of the boys lacrosse state playoffs.
Wollner notched a hat trick by halftime before he left the field midway through the third quarter after getting checked to the ground by Falcons defender Nic Slater. Wollner hobbled off, got cleaned up and returned five minutes later to score the next three goals.
Afterward, Wollner echoed the mood of the Chargers, who were pleased to advance but well aware they had enough lulls to take note of.
“We felt decent,” Wollner said. “We tried to come out pretty hard. We played a good game against Mullen last game and we tried to reenact that.”
Hayden Kammerzell had a goal and dished two assists for the Chargers (11-4), who play Mountain Vista in the second round. Mitch Erickson and Ian Fidino also scored, and Greg Kelsic had a goal nullified for an illegal stick.
The Chargers needed nearly eight minutes to score as they were denied by some good saves. Wollner broke the deadlock and the Chargers were soon up 3-0 and cruising into the second quarter.
The Chargers were extremely sharp when they were dialed in, but when they made mistakes it was usually their own fault, rather than something the Falcons did.
“Turnovers are definitely our biggest weakness,” said defender Jordan Stillwagon, who notched one assist. “We keep winning, but we definitely need to grow as a team and tighten up.”
“Story of the year for us. Turnovers have been a huge issue all season. We’ve been trying to control it, but it hasn’t happened yet.”
The Chargers were clearly going to score first, it was just a matter of when. They buzzed the Falcons’ goal like a hive before Wollner cashed in a pass from Kelsic with 4:14 remaining.
The fuse was lit and the Chargers were up 4-0 midway through the second quarter before the Falcons (7-8) answered. Wollner’s goal with 59 second left off an end-to-end run by Stillwagon put the Chargers up 5-1 at halftime.
The Chargers took their biggest lead with 9:37 remaining in the fourth when Wollner’s seventh goal put them up 9-2.
High. Ranch 0-1-1-3—5
Goals: Wollner 7, Kammerzell, Erickson, Fidino. Assists: Kammerzell 2, Wollner, Kelsic, Stillwagon, Black.