Joe Smith, Local Sports, Morgantown, Sports, University

Nate Gibson’s six goals lead University to OT win against Morgantown High


MORGANTOWN, W. Va. — University High lacrosse player Nate Gibson has a certain beverage of choice on gameday: Red Bull.
“Yellow is my favorite,” he said. “Only before big games.”
Gibson had his fix before the Hawks took the field Friday night against cross-town rival Morgantown, and it was hard to argue with the results. He notched six goals as University won 14-13 in overtime.
“We knew that one of their poles that would be guarding me would be out, so we called our iso,” he said.
Gibson’s high-scoring performance was a fine example of the energy the Hawks brought. Trailing 8-7 at halftime, the Hawks were electric in final 24 minutes of play, outscoring Morgantown 4-1 in the third quarter.
“Our goalies always sees the ball better in the second half, and when he’s making saves and we start scoring goals, everybody gets hypeand it builds up our confidence. We just start reeling them in,” Gibson said.
The Hawks’ second-half surge threw Morgantown off its game. Coach Jeremy Bennett would call it a “mind-block”.
“I just think we were making some mental mistakes. We came out in the second half and didn’t stick to the gameplan. We just got caught up in the style of game we don’t like to be playing,” Bennett said.
The Mohigans trailed by as many as three goals in the fourth quarter, but battled back to lead 13-12 with under two minutes to play. The Hawks answered within the next minute to force overtime, where Gibson scores the game-winner.
For Hawks coach Brian Houk, the close win represented a turning point. After a season-filled with blown leads and missed opportunities, he found relief in seeing his team close out a lead.
“We’ve lost a lot of games this year where we’ve been tied or leading in the fourth quarter, so really we just talked at practice all week about finishing games. We haven’t gotten a full four-quarter game all season. We had four-and-a-half tonight,” he said.
“The guys listened well, and they came out and gave a fantastic effort we have yet to see this year. It was a wonderful thing to finally see, and it shows we’re in a good spot and they’ve really been putting in the work.”