NA boys lacrosse relies on each player bringing own personality

Thursday, April 4, 2019 | 6:11 PM

Matt Osten and the North Allegheny boys lacrosse team have a strong baseline to guide them. The Tigers’ system provides a solid foundation for an offensive attack.

Making North Allegheny’s attack special relies on each player bringing his own personality. No two players approach each situation the same way.

During the Tigers’ 3-0 start, their offense has used differing approaches to complement a strong defense. Osten scored nine goals in the first three games, including a four-goal performance during an 18-3 win over Shaler last Tuesday.

“I think we have a good system, but we are all very creative as well,” said Osten, a senior attackman. “The system is there for a guideline, but everyone has their own creativity. We all have something a little different you can’t apply to the rest of us. Isaiah (Davis) may have some move I can’t do. I may have something he can’t do.”

North Allegheny coach John Rullan doesn’t feel the team has played enough games to know what it is going to be yet. The Tigers hosted two Ohio teams, Thomas Worthington and Upper Arlington, over the weekend (result were too late for this edition).

What the Tigers have displayed is an ability to play tough defense. North Allegheny shutout Central Catholic to open the season and followed that with an 8-6 win over Mt. Lebanon.

“The past couple years, the defense has been our cornerstone,” Osten said. “We build off them. When they play well, our offense plays better than they usually would.”

Continuing to build on that foundation will be vital to the Tigers’ success.

“Staying healthy and keeping that intensity up throughout the season,” Rullan said. “That’s probably the biggest thing for us. We have some depth. We have 28 kids on the team, and it’s a hard-working group.”

Having a number options on offense showed up in the win over Shaler. Davis scored a team-high five goals, and Kyer Byerly, Owen Kegel, Tyler Lamark, Jake Williams, Chris Eck and Zack Kairys also scored.

Osten enjoys seeing how teammates handle each system.

“We learn from each other,” he said. “Everyone has their own internal drive to see what works and what doesn’t work. In gametime, any situation we are in we have a solution for the outcome.”


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