Boys lacrosse falls short to Massapequa in county finals

Boys lacrosse falls short to Massapequa in county finals

Courtesy of MSG Varsity

Port huddles after scoring against Syosset in the playoffs. The Vikings won 11-9, however lost to Massapequa in the county finals.

Eric Fishbin, Sports Editor

 

After winning its final two regular season games, and finishing with an 11-4 regular season record and a number three seed in Class A, the boys lacrosse team entered the playoffs with momentum.

Their first playoff matchup was against the defending champion Syosset Braves, who finished with a 13-4 regular season record.  The Vikings readied themselves with hours of intense practices.

As the team arrived at Hofstra for a game under the lights, Port fans were in the stands to cheer the team’s third consecutive playoff appearance.

“As the team ran on to the field you could really hear the support of the fans.  It was really exciting to see Port return to the playoffs.  The crowd was really into the game the whole time,” said freshman Dylan Lublin.

The Vikings gave up the first goal.  However, the team quickly rebounded and scored three goals in a row.  By the end of the first quarter, Port led by a score of 5-4.

In the second quarter, both teams scored a goal, leaving Port with a 6-5 lead at the end of the half.

As the third quarter started, the Vikings struggled.  They gave up a quick goal within the first minute and the Braves tied it up at 6 a piece.  Minutes later, Syosset reclaimed their lead for the first time since the first quarter.  Port then came storming back with two quick goals to make it 8-7 with ten minutes remaining in the period.

The tides turned again when Syosset scored a goal to tie it up and then scored again late in the third to take the lead at 9-8.

“The first three quarters we were able to keep up with them, but once the fourth quarter hit, we knew it was ours. The minute the whistle blew, Derek Caruso set up a dodge and scored a goal to tie it up. From there on out, we knew we were going to the county championship,” said junior Luke Rizzo.

The Vikings scored three goals and shut out the Braves in the final quarter.  They went on to win the game 11-9 in one of the closest match-ups the team has ever had.  The team celebrated their feat with a dog pile with sticks and gloves flying in the air.

“We played with so much courage, and confidence. We knew that nothing could get in our way, not even the defending champs,” said Rizzo.

Caruso, Crawley, and junior Daniel Grossman all tallied hat tricks, and sophomore Joey Froccaro and Crawley led the team with two assists a piece.

Riding high from their emotional win, Port advanced to the Nassau Class A Finals to face the Massapequa Chiefs for the first time in over ten years with the conference championship up for grabs.  Despite their momentum, Port was soundly defeated by a score of 16-3.

At the start of the game, Massapequa took a commanding 4-0 lead in the first quarter.  Port scored two goals in the second quarter, but was unable stifle the Massapequa offense lead by junior James Byrnes.  Massapequa took a commanding 8-2 lead going into the half.

Massapequa’s dominant offense and wall-like defense halted Port’s Cinderella run.  Scoring four goals in each quarter, Massapequa was named conference champs.

Most players on the Vikings would agree that the finals did not turn out as they expected.  The Vikings went in with confidence and a positive attitude, but came out disappointed.

“Unfortunately, we fell short and did not accomplish our entire goal of winning the county championship. As for moving forward, I will be going into my senior year, hoping for one thing… getting that same opportunity again. Closing out my high school career, I will do all it takes to win the county championships,” said Rizzo.

As for the future, the Vikings can still be effective and return to the conference finals.

“We have two young defensemen, John Neil and Charlie Schar, who had an outstanding season. They are going to be huge for us next year as well as upcoming seniors, Aaron Mevorah and Sam Litman. Also, we have Daniel Grossman who is a sleeper. We have a great coaching staff and I know that they will take us to that same situation. Next time we will conquer!” said Rizzo.