The Central Mass Lacrosse Season in Review
Monday, June 18, 2012
Several schools emerged as forces to be feared throughout the state, while other young programs took their next steps. A pair of new programs took their first steps toward becoming varsity teams, and four players earned All American honors.
Tyngsborough Dominates in First CMass Season
The Tyngsborough Tigers made sure everyone knew who they were in their first Central Mass season. The Tigers flew through their regular season schedule unscathed at 19-0, and rode Central Mass' top defense to the district semifinals. In the end, the Tigers just couldn't keep up with high-powered Grafton, but senior goalie Peter Latulippe and senior attacker Garrett Glavin proved they could play with anybody in the region.
Algonquin Makes Second Consecutive Title Game Appearance
While they may want to forget the actual game, Algonquin made history by making it to the state championship game for a second straight year. The T-Hawks fell to Concord-Carlisle 13-3, but before you dismiss their accomplishments, keep in mind that no Central Mass public school has ever made the state championship game before Algonquin did last year. Despite losing seniors Conor Healy, Dave McGovern and Patrick Murphy, it would be foolish to sleep on the T-Hawks next year.
Worcester's Historic Win
Worcester's Combined lacrosse team features players from all Worcester Public Schools, but wins have been tough to come by as a lack of funding and practice time has led to little cohesion on the field. In fact, the Warriors had not won a game since the season opener in 2006, but that changed this year. On May 2nd, behind a five goal effort from Greg Wise and a six assist performance from Alex Elkins, the Warriors blew past Assabet Valley Tech 12-2. To prove it wasn't a fluke, the Warriors won a tight game against Northbridge 6-5 less than a week later.
Milford and Nashoba Headed in the Right Direction
The Milford Hawks had never made the Central Mass playoffs until last season, but now a playoff berth is expected. Nashoba, on the other hand, overcame the losses of last season's two leading scorers Nick French and Scott Lovington to qualify for the playoffs as well. The Hawks have a plethora of talent in their junior class- guys like Jon Dague and Eric Overdahl- and Nashoba got big time contributions from sophomore Mike D'Entremont and junior Trevor Pilkington this season. Look for both team's to take another step forward next year.
Westborough and Shrewsbury Finish Strong
Things weren't looking good for either of these teams early in the season. Shrewsbury started out the year 0-3, and then 3-6 before finding its groove. The Rangers, on the other hand, endured a three-game losing streak to drop to 3-4. The Colonials got back to playing their trademark defense, with offensive firepower provided by senior Cam Kerr. They then won three of their last four to qualify for the playoffs. Westborough won 7 of 10 in a late season stretch, led by Dean Sudol's offensive prowess, and junior Tom Lawton's abilities on the draw.
Blackstone Valley Tech's First playoff Win
Few teams exceeded expectations like Blackstone Valley Tech did this season. The Beavers rebounded from back-to-back losing seasons to win 12 regular season games and qualify for the playoffs. Once there, BVT won a thrilling 8-7 overtime game against Littleton to capture the program's first playoff victory. The Beavers were a senior-laden team this year, led by captains Trevor Hendrix Zach Sullivan and Adam Karagosian, but coach Anthony Comforti has raved about the play and potential of sophomore defensemen Nick Wojnar.
Young Players Step Up for St. John's
Coming into the year, much was made of Syracuse-bound senior Jeff Desko. The versatile senior certainly lived up to expectations, and recorded a hat-trick in the Pioneers' semifinal loss to Algonquin. Still, it has been the play of sophomore Drew Smiley and juniors Hunter Burdick and Andrew Arnold that has given St. John's great reason for optimism next year. Smiley and Burdick finished No.2 and No. 3, respectively, in scoring for St. John's, and Arnold gave up less than six goals a game. Big things will be expected from all three in 2013.
Two New Programs
The game of lacrosse is growing rapidly in Central Mass, and two schools took steps this season toward becoming varsity programs. The Advanced Math and Science Academy (AMSA) is in its second year of lacrosse, with a team currently playing a junior varsity schedule. The team features several middle school and female players, and coach Marc Zarrella is very encouraged about the direction of his program. Hopedale is in its first year of lacrosse, playing only scrimmages and intramural games. The school now has a boys and girls team, both coached by Eric Moxim, a former assistant with the Milford lacrosse team.
Favorite for Next Season?
Of course it wouldn't be a wrap up without a look ahead to next season. You would be hard pressed to find a better returning duo in the entire state than Grafton's pair of All Americans. Juniors Tyler Reilly and Bryan Rotatori were the two leading scorers in Central Mass this season, and helped the Indians play Algonquin down to the wire. Other pieces return around them, but Grafton will go as far as its two stars can carry it.
- GoLocal Coaches Poll: Big Win Keeps Algonquin On Top
- GoLocal Coaches Poll: Central Mass Lacrosse
- GoLocal Lacrosse Coaches Poll: Another Big Win for Tyngsborough
- GoLocal Lacrosse Coaches Poll: Can Undefeated Tyngsborough Grab the Top Spot?
- GoLocal Lacrosse Coaches Poll: Grafton Makes Its Case for No. 1