SARASOTA — For nearly six decades, quarterbacks, linebackers and free safeties have roamed the Ram Bowl.
On Wednesday night, the venerable stadium played host to a new crew of athletes, including middies and attackmen.
Riverview High played its first-ever home varsity lacrosse game against the Sarasota Military Academy Eagles and the results could not have been better for the new bunch of Rams.
Riverview rolled over SMA, 22-1, for the first lacrosse victory in the school’s history.
Spencer Brooks and Jesse Clark scored three goals each and Cole Hautamaki, Zachary Jekonski and Evan Goff added two goals apiece as the Rams simply overwhelmed the Eagles.
Both teams entered the contest with 0-2 records.
“Our program is at a different level than theirs,” Riverview lacrosse coach Pete de Lisser said. “Even though we are a first-year program, most of these kids have played at the club level. This isn’t quite as new for us.
“They are just trying to get started. My hat is off to them. They made a good effort. They were overmatched.
“It’s our first win, so we’re happy. And we’ll get back to work tomorrow.”
The honor of scoring the first goal at home went to Brooks with the help of an assist by Clark Flessner with the game less than two minutes old.
The Rams held a commanding 5-0 lead by the end of the first 12-minute period. Riverview made it 14-1 by halftime to force a running clock in the second half.
Fifteen Rams scored goals and 10 provided assists. Hautamaki led the way with four assists to go along with his two goals.
Nate Hagan scored the lone goal for SMA on an assist from Sean Miles with 3:20 remaining in the first half.
Riverview must spend its first season as an independent team and isn’t eligible for the FHSAA state playoffs until next year.
“We have to be an independent for the first year and no playoffs,” de Lisser said. “But we’ll play a solid local schedule and we’re playing some teams from out of state.
“We only lose three seniors this year. We’re having fun.”
Ryan Dezzi, Lucas Oleksak, Parker McHenry, Mike Van Ness, Dusty Hibbs, Rhys McRobb, Ronnie Saba, Julian Lowenstein, Connor Sinclair and Flessner also scored goals for the Rams.