— Michael Fornabaio (@fornabaioctp) April 10, 2021
WESTPORT — Staples’ boys lacrosse faceoff crew, led by Henry Dodge, got the Wreckers the ball. The attack and middies held it in the New Canaan end for three, four, five minutes at a time Saturday
And when No. 3 New Canaan broke out to try to let the Rams’ creative offense go to work, if Staples didn’t force a turnover, J.P. Kosakowski was there for a 10-bell save.
Not much could’ve gone better for No. 6 Staples in a solid season-opening 7-3 win at home.
“Nobody knows (Kosakowski’s) name. There’s a lot of lists that come out about all these guys to be ready for, and J.P.’s a guy nobody really knows about,” Staples coach Will Koshansky said.
“I’d say there’s a lot of guys on my team that nobody knows about. Other programs seem to get a lot of All-America, All-FCIAC, all-state guys. I know I’ve got a lot of really good players this year. They’re all hungry. They’re ready to prove the doubters wrong, focus on what we want to focus on and take care of business.”
Staples had the ball for most of the first quarter and led 3-0 early in the second. New Canaan twice cut the lead back to two goals before Staples broke it open with three third-quarter goals.
The book had Kosakowski for 14 saves, and add points for quality on a few of them.
“Our game plan was mostly to focus on 2, (Chris) Canet, their best player. I think he had all three goals,” Kosakowski said, “to lock him if possible, start with a shorty (short-stick middie) and switch to a pole (long-stick defender). We expected coming in he could’ve had five goals, three assists, eight points. We held him to three (and) neutralized the rest of the team. It was a perfect game plan executed perfectly.”
New Canaan coach Chip Buzzeo credited Koshansky, formerly on the Rams’ staff, and the Wreckers with a solid game plan.
“Look, we got some great looks. The goalie made some great saves. We hit some pipes,” Buzzeo said.
“We’ll get better. I’m not worried. There’s no reason to panic. We’ll be fine.”
The Wreckers spread the scoring around; Aidan Best was their only player with two goals. Dodge scored the last straight off a faceoff win.
The teams meet again May 22 at New Canaan; that one is the FCIAC league game.