NEW FAIRFIELD — They’re showing themselves to be the class of the SWC again, and the focus for a youngish New Fairfield boys lacrosse team remains improvement.
“Our first game, we were a little sloppy, but progressively we’ve gotten better,” senior Matt Constantinides said Wednesday afternoon after the No. 8 Rebels defeated No. 10 Weston 9-4. “Even in practices, you could see it. It’s amazing how much we’ve improved since Week 1.”
Winners of the conference tournament the past three times it was contested, the Rebels haven’t lost to an SWC foe since a late-season loss to Newtown in 2017, nor any state team since the Class M semifinals that year.
After graduating most of the 2019 Class M champions and losing last year to the pandemic with the rest of the state, they’re still 9-0 past the midpoint of a 14-game regular season.
“All our guys at the beginning of the season were just very young,” Constantinides said. “Thomas Leary, Jevan Tenaglia — Jevan’s a junior, Thomas is a sophomore, Thomas hasn’t played lacrosse since eighth grade. You could definitely see how much he’s progressed, Jevan, how much he’s progressed throughout the year.”
Both contributed to the offense on Wednesday, as did Towson-bound Constantinides. Nate Alviti’s five goals, though, led the Rebels, who shook a slow start.
Alviti’s first made it 4-1 at the half, losing his man in the midfield and barreling all the way in to score with 3.5 seconds left in the second quarter.
“Our bigger guys kinda stepped up. Nate, Matt, those guys are marathon guys for us. I’m going to try to use them much as I can until they tell me they can’t do it,” New Fairfield coach Marty Morgan said.
His top players, “they all did great. They did enough for us to win. We turned the ball over a lot, and I said, for as many turnovers as we had, as many forced passes, still got a big ‘W’. That means a lot.”
A young defense limited chances for Weston (9-1), too, perhaps helping the Rebels’ offense settle down before the Trojans’.
“I think we’re trying to rely on too few guys and watch one guy run through the team. We didn’t play that game as a team,” Weston coach Josh Thornton said. “Their defense was ready to slide.
“Later in the game, when we actually made some movements off the ball, we got some good shots. We just put too few shots on the goal today. Part was them, part was us just watching one guy trying to make one guy try to make too much happen.”
Andrew Albert made 15 saves for the Trojans, helping keep it close.
“It’s nice to have Nate Alviti and Matt Constantinides, and our defense. All those other pieces, but winning faceoffs and having a kid that can go against anybody is great.” —New Fairfeld coach Marty Morgan