There was one pretty good boys lacrosse championship game, with St. Joseph closing out the Class S final in the second half on Saturday. There was one that looked like it’d be a classic that turned out an easy Darien win in Class L.
Stuck in the middle again at McMahon’s Jack Casagrande Field was Class M, in which the expected New Fairfield coronation came to pass, a dominant 18-2 win. But while Weston licks its wounds for the moment, New Fairfield coach Marty Morgan sees an up-and-comer in the Trojans, even if some of the players who’ve made them so are departing.
“These guys are a year behind us. Weston is — they’re loaded next year,” Morgan said after the last game for his group of seniors that didn’t lose an in-state game in two years. “I’ll be watching film on these guys for a long time, sleepless nights, because they’re a really good team.”
There wasn’t a lot of hype around the Trojans to start the year. New Fairfield was a clear favorite, but other schools were the ones more often mentioned in that next Class M tier.
“Even the guys who weren’t in the stat sheet, the guys who come out and lead every day, they’re awesome kids,” Trojans coach Josh Thornton said.
Four-year midfielder Ryan Werner came as advertised, but Thornton said lots of players emerged to fill some selfless roles, seniors like Greyson Collins, Daniel Slow, Cosmo Randazzo, helping the Trojans to their first Class M final; Weston reached three Class S finals, most recently in 2015, winning three titles.
“Those guys have shown up and done little things for us, filled out the defense, filled out our faceoffs, and they’re great leaders,” Thornton said.
“Matt Scott, he ran track. He got into a different school where wasn’t going to run, and he’s like, ‘I’m going to come back and play lacrosse,’ and he was great for us, great on ground balls, great energy. And our goalie, Daniel Lucas, he had some great games.”
Weston played most of Saturday’s game without all-state junior midfielder James Goetz, limited to a handful of shifts by a lingering ankle injury.
“He kind of tweaked it again today, so that was tough,” Thornton said.
“He’s a three-sport star at the school. I think he’s been banged up since he got into high school. He’s going to take some time to heal himself up, but he’s a warrior out there. … He has one speed.”
LOVE OF THE GAME
Morgan has 10 seniors who’ll play varsity lacrosse in college and figured his other seniors will play it as a club sport.
“(I told them), I want to see you guys 20 years from now coaching,” Morgan said. “That’s how this sport grows. You love it. You stay with it.”
SPEAKING OF GROWING
Bacon Academy made its first appearance in a CIAC final. The Bobcats are the ninth school to make its finals debut since the CIAC tournaments went from two divisions to three enrollment-based classes in 2006. Three did it in that first spring, three more by 2009, and since then, there have only been Brookfield (2014), Waterford (2017) and the Bobcats.
Only two debuting finalists won since 2006, both in Class S: Weston in 2007 and St. Joseph in 2009.
Saturday’s games featured a handful of highlight-reel goals.
They began with St. Joseph junior midfielder Cole daSilva, who barreled through a handful of Bacon Academy players’ attempts to slow him down, got to the net and put the Cadets up 5-3 late in the third quarter.
Dylan Hanley then opened the Class M final with a shot near the left sideline, from his knees, scoring with the goalie out of the cage off a ground ball. (Editor’s note: We’ll have more reels later)
Not to be outdone, Darien scored a couple: defensive middie Sam Wilson drove to the net, got knocked down by Ryan Schriber and scored anyway as he hit the turf to give the Blue Wave a 5-0 lead.
And defender Sam Cragin picked off goalie Andrew Calabrese’s heave with about five seconds left in the first half, heaved it back from the other side of midfield and hit the vacated net to make it 9-2.
KING AND CAVALIERS
Lars Tiffany, head coach of NCAA champion Virginia, will visit King School in Stamford on June 25. He’ll participate in a clinic for students in Grades 5-8 at 6:30 p.m., followed by a reception and talk at the school’s Performing Arts Center. at 7:15. See kingschoolct.org for more information.