May 15, 2010 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
On the long bus ride back from the north country Saturday afternoon, the Jamesville-DeWitt boys lacrosse team could breathe once more.
An undefeated regular season and 13-game win streak both were in serious jeopardy throughout the Red Rams’ trip to Carthage. Only with a flurry in the final two minutes did J-D get out with a 7-6 victory over the Comets.
These two teams have dominated Section III Class B lacrosse in recent years, with many showdowns in sectional finals – including 2009, when J-D prevailed. And they appeared to be hurdling toward another championship showdown early in June, with J-D no. 2 in the state Class B rankings and Carthage at no. 9.
Unlike many times in years past, the Comets didn’t have to make the lengthy road trip to the Syracuse area. It also had no intention of letting J-D’s high-octane offense gain too much of a footing.
Thus, after the Rams scored twice in the game’s first 30 seconds, it did not score again the rest of the period as Carthage rallied to tie it, 2-2. J-D moved ahead 4-2 in the second quarter, but the Comets closed within a goal, 4-3, just before the break.
Out of its rhythm, the Rams committed a series of turnovers, but also forced Carthage into mistakes, too. Defenders Mac Feiner, Matt Kopp and Dima Bakrukov were steady throughout the day, and Dan DiStefano finished with 11 saves.
Carthage still caught up, though, by the fourth quarter, then seized a 6-5 lead and had chances to go further in front, but did not. Still, having never trailed in a game in the fourth quarter all season, J-D now had to find some new resolve — and did so.
With 1:58 left, Cam Stone, who already had three assists, fired home the tying goal. The Rams got the ball back again and, with 30 seconds to play, Stone fed Jordan Evans, who fired it past Tyler Beyor for what proved to be the game-winner.
Jake Bratek had three goals in the early going. Eric DeJohn and Joe Shepard joined Evans and Stone in the one-goal column. Kyle Temple led Carthage, scoring twice, but the Rams did a solid job containing the Comets’ duo of Derek Kehoe and Tom Grimm, holding them to one goal apiece, though Grimm did pick up two assists.
Just before the trip north, J-D flicked aside East Syracuse-Minoa, who saw its late-season surge halt in a dramatic way during Thursday’s 16-3 loss to the Red Rams.
Even though the time of possession was fairly even in the first quarter, ESM could not convert a series of J-D turnovers. This gave the Rams time to warm up its high-powered attack through a 4-0 first quarter.
Early in the second period, the Rams erupted for seven more goals to make it 11-0 before the Spartans even got on the board. Another shutout followed in the third period, J-D adding to its margin as DeJohn kept getting open.
DeJohn finished with six goals, twice ESM’s number by himself. Bratek, who made his signing to Syracuse University official a day earlier, scored four times, while Shepard, Stone and Peter Goss each had a goal and two assists. Evans, Alex Hatem and Joe Elbers also converted. Tom Rosaschi, Quadear Mike and Mike Cummings earned ESM’s goals.
In the wake of wins over Auburn and Liverpool the week before, ESM arrived at J-D with a large amount of confidence, enhanced by Tuesday’s 15-5 win over Fulton.
The Spartans’ attack ripped through the Red Raiders in the first half, including six unanswered goals in the second quarter on its way to a 12-2 edge.
Mike Cummings, with five goals and two assists, set things up for his teammates as Garrett Smith, Marc Sacco and Tom Rosaschi each scored twice. Sean Dooling, James Landry, Nick Capriotti and Jesse Perry also scored, with Quadear Mike producing three asssits. Bobby Campese joined Landry, Smith and Rosaschi in the assist column.
As this went on, J-D stayed unbeaten with a 16-4 disposal of Homer. Not taking anything lightly, J-D survived Homer’s attempt to slow things down in the first half and outscored the Trojans 12-3 in the second half.
A well-balanced attack included Bratek, DeJohn and Evans each putting in three goals, all of them fed by Cam Stone with his career-best seven assists. Hatem and Rob Elbers had two goals apiece, while Stone, Goss and Drew Wanamaker also converted.
ESM followed the J-D loss by going to Cortland Saturday and falling to the Purple Tigers 15-9. Improving to 12-3 on the season, Cortland left ESM behind early, steadily building a 14-6 lead through the work of Dave Fernandes, who finished with seven goals.
No one on the Spartans came close to Fernandes’ production, as Rosaschi was the only player to score twice. Mike had a goal and two assists as Cummings, Smith, Landry, Sacco and Perry got the other goals.
And Cortland will get its shot at J-D Thursday, likely with the Red Rams’ undefeated regular season on the line 24 hours before Class B playoff pairings are announced.