Fairfield Prep senior goaltender Sam Cargill had a frustrating start to the 2021 season. He missed most of the preseason and the first week of the regular season due to quarantine.
But the goalie got his first start against New Canaan two weeks ago and has been the Jesuits’ go-guy in the cage as the Jesuits have rattled off six-straight victories, including a tight, 13-9 victory over No. 3 Staples at home Thursday night.
Cargill made 11 saves as the Jesuits pulled away in the fourth quarter against Staples.
But none of those compare what he did late in the fourth quarter of this SCC-FCIAC showdown: going cage-to-cage and scoring to put the No. 5-ranked Jesuits up 11-8 with 3 minutes, 7 seconds left.
Cargill’s teammates mobbed him all the way back down to his usual position in front of the Prep cage.
“Maybe in youth,” said Cargill, trying to recall if he’d ever scored a goal. “But nothing like that.”
Fairfield Prep coach Graham Niemi said he called a time out during a clear — “which I hate to do” — to correct a mistake and plan his next move. “I thought they were going to 10-man (pressure) us. They ended up matching feet, so no one was on Sam and I told him to run it out.”
Cargill kept going and head into the attack zone. Though he briefly lost the ball, but recovered and went in to score.
“I saw them come at me, dropped the ball, scooped it up and no one slid,” Cargill said. “I said, ‘When am I ever going to get this chance again?’ Had to do it.”
“Wild. Wild,” Niemi said. “It doesn’t happen a lot.”
Sophomore Marco Firmender scored four goals for the Jesuits (8-2). Sophomore Peter Grandolfo, senior Kyle Stevenson and freshman Tim Shannehan scored two goals apiece.
But all the buzz afterward was about Cargill’s strike. He got a massive hug from the team after the final horn.
“There’s nothing better than lacrosse in May,” Cargill said. “And we’re going to take this all the way into June.”