FAIRMONT - Jeff Kot diversified his 18-player roster's roles during Saturday's nonconference soccer match, and it paid incredible dividends.
Brock Johnson generated two goals and two assists to pace a balanced Fairmont Area offensive attack that featured 13 different hometown players scoring at least one point at Kot Soccer Complex.
Oscar Svenfelz registered the Cardinals' initial goal before distributing back-to-back assists during the non-league clash's opening nine minutes to help engineer an 11-0 victory over the Mankato Loyola Crusaders in Fairmont.
"They graduated a lot of players from last year's team, so they're very, very young this season," Kot said in reference to Loyola's senior-less roster. "We moved some of our guys around today to mix things up a bit."
Indeed. All-South Central Conference goalkeeper Matt Tennyson shed his oversized gloves and made an instant impact at the Cardinals' offensive end of the field.
Crusader starting netminder Malik Baxter batted Tennyson's left-footed blast on goal only to have Grant Becker follow up the carom. Baxter managed to stop that shot only to watch as Svenfelz made the third-effort shot count only 1 minute and 11 seconds into the game.
Tennyson later hammered home Svenfelz's perfect right-to-left crossing pass from the end line to double Fairmont Area's lead to 2-0 at the 32-minute mark.
Svenfelz duplicated his precision passing skills only 24 seconds later, using the exact same end line maneuver to set up Derek Hunwardsen's goal at the doorstep.
Grant Becker needed less than a minute to drive the left end line off a throw-in before beating Baxter to the wide side for a 4-0 lead at the 30:55 juncture.
Kot then utilized a blend of reassigned starters and reserves to chalk up two more goals before intermission.
Sophomore Joe Nordquist chipped in a follow-up goal off a double-assist from sophomore Peter Nielsen and Johnson at the 16:51 mark before Johnson set up Robert Hamp's right-side goal with 8:39 left in the first half.
It was more of the same during the final 40 minutes as Johnson drilled a left-point net-finder off sophomore Evan Ward's precision pass at the 17:53 juncture.
Ward then traded roles by nailing a left-to-right corner blast off a pass from Ben Mitchell to extend the Cardinals' lead to 8-0 just 35 seconds later.
Mitchell then doubled his assist total on the game by spotting Dan Simmering for a left-wing goal with 14:57 showing on the scoreboard.
Carter Welchlin's alert upfield pass caused Loyola reserve goalie Caleb Broker to make a sliding attempt to stop the ball's progress only to watch Johnson nimbly sidestep the netminder before scoring into an unprotected net only 38 seconds later.
Nielsen then capped Fairmont Area's double-digit scoring total by chipped home Zac Ehlert's end-line assist with 3:39 remaining in regulation.
Trason Arens made three first-half saves for the Cardinals before teammate Sam Havnen notched two stops during the second half.
Baxter turned away 15 of the home team's 21 first-half shots on goal, while Broker stopped 13 of the Cardinals' 18 second-half shots.
Fairmont Area (5-0, 2-0 SCC) travels to Mankato East on Tuesday.
Loyola 0-0- 0
FA - Oscar Svenfelz (Matt Tennyson, Grant Becker), 38:49.
FA - Tennyson (Svenfelz), 32:00.
FA - Derek Hunwardsen (Svenfelz), 31:36.
FA - Becker (unassisted), 30:56.
FA - Joe Nordquist (Peter Nielsen, Brock Johnson), 16:51.
FA - Robert Hamp (Johnson), 8:39.
FA - Johnson (Evan Ward), 17:53.
FA - Ward (Ben Mitchell), 17:18.
FA - Dan Simmering (Mitchell), 14:57.
FA - Johnson (Carter Welchlin), 14:19.
FA - Nielsen (Zac Ehlert), 3:39.
Shots on goal: Fairmont Area 21-18-39; Mankato Loyola 3-2-5.
Saves: Trason Arens (FA) 3-x-3, Sam Havnen (FA) x-2-2; Malik Baxter (ML) 15-x-15, Caleb Broker (ML) x-13-13.
Fairmont Area 2, Mankato Loyola 1 - Natalie Shimon delivered the game-winning goal during the second half to propel the visiting Cardinals to a 2-1 nonconference triumph over the Crusaders on Saturday in Mankato.
All-state forward Katie Nicoson produced the latter of her two assists on the game to set up Shimon's tiebreaking netfinder. Nicoson lofted a corner kick to Brooklyn Leichtnam, who spotted Shimon for the goal.
Lexi Johnson tallied Fairmont Area's first-half goal off an assist from Nicoson to even the score at 1-all.
Emily Gaspar staked Loyola to an early 1-0 lead with an unassisted goal during the opening half.
Jess Koskovich recorded six saves to earn the victory in net for the Cardinals, which outshot the Crusaders by a 12-7 margin.
Fairmont Area (2-3, 0-2 South Central) travels to Worthington today for a 6:45 p.m. non-league match.