Weather Forecast


Bemidji blanks Grand Rapids 4-0

GRAND RAPIDS – Isak Sommer’s hat trick highlighted an impressive victory for the Bemidji High School soccer team Tuesday night.

The Lumberjacks blanked Grand Rapids 4-0, scoring in just about every way possible and improving their record this season to 4-0.

Bemidji scored directly off a corner kick, on a penalty kick, on a direct free kick and on a regular old goal from the pitch as they topped the Thunderbirds in nonconference action.

“Set pieces really decided it for us,” BHS head coach Rick Toward said. “Grand Rapids is a really team, better than the 4-0 score showed. We just got some bounces to go our way tonight.”

The Lumberjacks opened up the scoring 25 minutes into the game, when sophomore Alex Schussman netted a goal straight in off a corner kick to make it 1-0.

After that, it turned into the Isak Sommer show.

With just 30 seconds remaining in the first half, the Thunderbirds committed a foul in the box. Sommer stepped in to take the penalty kick and buried it, giving the Jacks a 2-0 lead at halftime.

In the second half, Sommer had help, receiving a pass from Seth Wall and beating the Grand Rapids keeper in the game’s 46th minute.

That made it 3-0, but Sommer wasn’t finished.

He scored his third and team’s fourth goal a minute later, taking a quick kick from 20 yards following a Thunderbirds foul.

Sommer saw that the Grand Rapids keeper was out of position and flicked it in before the keeper was ready.

Toward was impressed with how his team kept possession against a solid Grand Rapids team.

“We held possession well,” he said. “We generally hold the ball more and they like to play more directly. So we didn’t generate as many shots but our scoring chances were a lot better, I think.”

The Lumberjacks had 12 shots on goal compared to the Thunderbirds’ 13. Bemidji keeper Connor McNallan saved all 13 shots that came his way.

“This was a good win for us against a strong team,” Toward said. “Our defense was solid and our midfield is doing well with this new formation.”

The Jacks return to the pitch Thursday, when they’ll host East Grand Forks at 5 p.m.

Bemidji 4, Grand Rapids 0

Bemidji2     2 – 4

Grand Rapids0     0 – 0


First Half

B – Schussman, 25:45

B – Sommer (PK), 39:24

Second Half

B – Sommer (Wall), 46:00

B – Sommer (FK), 47:00

Jack Hittinger

Jack Hittinger is the sports editor of the Bemidji Pioneer. He is also the Bemidji State beat writer. He hails from the Great State of Michigan. Read his Bemidji State blog at and follow him on Twitter at @Jackhitts.

(218) 333-9772