Even an extra round of regional play did not bother the Jamesville-DeWitt boys lacrosse team as it roared in the direction of a third state Class B championship in four years.
The bigger of the two obstacles in the regional phase appeared to be Saturday’s final at Union-Endicott High School against Vestal, who had crushed Horseheads 18-4 to snare the Section IV title and had put a scare into the Red Rams in last year’s regional game.
But J-D remembered that scare, and with the prolific duo of Jordan Evans and Griffin Feiner again running wild, the Rams blasted the Golden Bears in the first half and rolled to a 16-7 victory that really wasn’t as close as the final would indicate.
Given their big offensive numbers throughout the spring, Vestal knew that trying to keep Evans and Feiner contained was the key to staying in it against J-D. And the Golden Bears drew faint hope from the Rams’ shooting struggles in the opening minutes, as more than 10 shots flew off target before it got on the board.
Once J-D did score, though, it turned into a regular occurrence as it snared a 4-0 lead by the end of the first quarter and went wild with nine more tallies in the second period for a 13-1 halftime margin.
The routine rarely differed. Jeff Edwards or Griffin Johnson would win a face-off, the Rams would run into Vestal’s end of the field, Evans would set himself near the net and, at just the right moment, deposit a pass to Feiner, who would finish.
Most of the time, they were routine plays, but near the end of the half, Evans topped himself by fighting out of a triple team of Golden Bears defenders and passing again to Feiner for another goal – only this time it was the pass, not the shot, that went behind the back, a rare trick.