Andrew Forsyth broke out of his offensive slump in a big way Thursday.
The junior attacker scored the game’s first goal and ended up with a season-high four goals in Loyola’s 13-4 win over Libertyville in Wilmette.
“The past couple of games I got great looks, but my problem was finishing,” Forsyth said. “I was finally able to put some of them away. This game will help with my confidence.”
The top-seeded and defending state champion Ramblers (15-7) play No. 9 Lyons in the quarterfinals Saturday in Wilmette.
Loyola head coach Rob Snyder said it was good to see Forsyth be rewarded for his work on the offensive end.
“I always say the hardest part is creating shots, and that’s something he’s been doing,” Snyder said. “But the lid has been on the goal for him. Hopefully, this game broke the seal.”
Forsyth’s first goal came after senior Billy Jardeleza won the game’s opening faceoff and drew a double team in the offensive zone. He passed it to freshman Kaden Keller, who found a wide open Forsyth in the crease.
“That goal was a product of Billy doing what he does best,” Forsyth said.
After leading 5-2 at the half, Loyola separated itself in the third quarter. Forsyth scored the first goal before Keller scored four in a row to put the Ramblers ahead 10-2. Keller finished with four goals and one assist.
Sophomore Mike Feuer scored two goals and had one assist. Senior Tommy Schmitz, senior Chris Mancini and sophomore Ned Seaman each scored one goal apiece. Mancini contributed an assist. Senior Kyle Koch, sophomore Nolan Chow and sophomore Timothy Hackett all finished with one assist apiece.
“We faced a zone again,” Snyder said. “They tried to slow us down and tried to make it swampy. You can watch all the film on zone, but it takes you playing against it to get comfortable.”
Junior middie Luca Lazzaretto played his first game after being out for an extended period of time with a shoulder injury. Snyder said he looked good.
“This was a good team win,” Forsyth said. “Toward the end of the regular season, I think we hit a bit of a lull. We didn’t have much energy in practice or games. Now that it’s the playoffs, we are hitting are stride.”