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Pursuit to Play: Hermantown soccer returns with football's Michael Lau in net

Alicia Tipcke
Updated: September 08, 2020 10:40 PM

Many fall sports including football have been postponed in the Northland. However, with prep soccer underway, one Hermantown Hawk football player was able to pursue something new on the pitch. 

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Kicking off their season in late August is fairly typical for the Hermantown boys soccer team. 

However this year, practices and games arrived with many new COVID-19 health related guidelines. 

"We're sitting six feet apart on the bench," said head coach David Thompson. "You can't shake hands at the end of the game and feel like a good sport at the end, you know, we just have to wave at the other team. But generally those differences have been minimal compared to the gratitude we feel for being able to practice and play."

Coach Thompson said it meant a lot to his Hawks to return to the pitch after some fall sports were postponed. However, with football pushed to the spring it allowed one Hermantown junior, Michael Lau, to try something different.

"I wanted to do something in the fall so I came out for soccer," said Lau. 

The sport isn't totally new to Lau, having played soccer at the 10U level, but his position as goalie is new.

"Never played goalie, but I heard we needed a goalie. I'm pretty tall so I came out." Standing at 6'2'' Lau added the position, "was fun too."

He made his debut in net in Hermantown's season opener August 31st, helping them to a 2-2 draw against Duluth Marshall. 

Senior captain Evan Bjorlin said, "we learned a lot of things from that game. First off, I mean, our new goalie obviously. He did very well actually, but from that game we took a lot of things and that was just to get the rust off a little bit."

Three games into their 11 game shortened schedule, the Hawks are taking one match at a time. That's partially because their focus this season is on having both a successful year and staying healthy in order to keep playing.

"Every practice is a blessing," said Coach Thompson on playing in the COVID-19 pandemic. 

"It just feels great to get back out here again," added Bjorlin.

Hermantown (2-0-1) will host Grand Rapids for their home opener Thursday, September 10th at 4pm. 

Credits

Alicia Tipcke

Copyright 2020 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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