Cicero Despite playing four playoff contests, the Jamesville-DeWitt boys lacrosse team remained largely untested in the post-season entering Wednesday's state Class B semifinal with Victor (Section V) at Cicero-North Syracuse's Bragman Stadium.
The Red Rams had rarely trailed in its four playoff wins over New Hartford, East Syracuse-Minoa, Vestal and Massena, and had won each of those contests by double-digit margins. So when the Blue Devils were enjoying a 10-5 halftime advantage, the Red Rams were faced with its first real adversity in weeks.
But J-D triumphed over this unprecedented challenge, winning 17-13 thanks to a 12-3 second half rampage, and earned a second consecutive berth in the state final, and its fourth in the last five years.
“I’m proud of this team," said Griffin Johnson, who accounted for five points in the pivotal second half." I honestly haven’t seen heart like this on any of the other teams I’ve been on. We really showed that we’ve got the grit to do it.”
The Rams got into that early hole thanks to a pitiful performance at the face-off X, losing 24 of the first 28 draws it took.
As a result, after bursting out to a 4-1 lead thanks to four goals over a two-minute span, J-D appeared to be in serious trouble, having been outscored 9-1 in the final 13 minutes and three seconds of the second half.
But the halftime break somehow revitalized the Rams, and it began the scoring barrage - just as it has done so many times before this season.
Ryan Durkin traded goals with Dan Barrow (a Syracuse University recruit) to set the score at 11-6 with 10:33 left in the third quarter. Then J-D rattled off five straight goals to end the quarter, none bigger than the one scored by Ryan McKee with mere tenths of a second remaining.