Nike/LM HS Northeast Report: Nassau Showdown Looms
It's hard to not look ahead in the schedule with a matchup against the defending state champion looming.
That's the situation facing the Syosset boys' lacrosse team right now.
The Braves are 10-0 and ranked second in the Northeast, behind Massapequa -- the defending state champ who ended their 2014 season. The Chiefs topped the Braves in last season's Nassau County (Section VIII Class B) title game, but Syosset will get a rematch at the end of this week.
"I don't know if surprise is the right word for this start, but the expectations are high," Syosset coach John Calabria said. "One of the expectations for this team is that they take it day by day. We want to win the day. And if that means winning in practice, in a scrimmage, or in a game, we want to win the day. That's what we're really focused on."
Before a Friday matchup with Massapequa (10-0), the Braves face a strong Hicksville (N.Y.) team that sits at 7-3.
Nike/LM Northeast Boys' Top 10
1. Massapequa (N.Y.), 10-0
Ridgefield (Conn.) is off to a 4-0 start that includes an impressive 8-7 win over perennial Long Island powerhouse Garden City (N.Y.). Simon Mathias finished with three goals and two assists in that game, including the eventual winner midway through the fourth quarter. Ridgefield lost in last season's Class L state semifinals to Greenwich (Conn.). Greenwich topped Ridgefield three times last season, but the Tigers will get chance for redemption when they play at Greenwich on Tuesday. That's followed by a big matchup at Darien (Conn.) later in the week.
Garden City (N.Y.) is now 3-5, though each of the five losses were against teams that have been ranked or on the cusp of a regional ranking at some point this season. Garden City has lost four of its last five. In those games, the Trojans haven't scored more than seven goals. Duxbury (Mass.) topped the Trojans, 9-7, and Ridgefield (Conn.) escaped with an 8-7 win. ... Greenwich (Conn.) dropped out of the regional rankings after a 3-2 start that includes losses to Smithtown East (N.Y.) and Bronxville (N.Y.). The Cardinals are the defending Class L state champion.
The Braves already have set a program record for consecutive wins behind the leadership of 21 seniors and 16 juniors who have been playing with each other since kindergarten.
Syosset also has four freshmen and four sophomores on its roster. It's a team that knows what needs to be done to remain successful.
"When I mention that start, that winning streak, to the kids, they know what to tell me. They say, 'Coach, it doesn't matter. It just matters how we do in practice today," said Calabria, who is in his 17th season at Syosset. "I really want them to remain focused on just today's practice or just today's game. Whatever each day brings, that's what they need to be focused on."
Calabria said his team embraces a disciplined, fast-paced style and is unselfish and not afraid to make the extra pass.
"The kids have worked really hard on their conditioning and developing their stick skills," Calabria said. "We are a very fast-paced, very polished team. We're very focused on making one more pass, making that perfect pass every time."
Syosset will go as far as its senior class can carry it.
Calabria points to three of his seniors as being the leaders this season -- attackman Alex Concannon (24 goals, 19 assists), faceoff specialist/midfielder Cole Samaroo and 6-foot-4, 230-pound close defenseman David Reiter.
"This team belongs to the seniors," Calabria said. "It's the largest group of seniors I've ever had. This is the most committed group I've ever had."
Boys' Northeast Player of the Week
Jake Lewis, Cazenovia (N.Y.)
The junior attackman scored with two seconds left in the third overtime period to lift the Lakers to a 7-6 win over rival Westhill (N.Y.). Lewis received a pass from Derek White on a restart and netted the winner. White finished with two goals and two assists for the two-time defending Section III Class C champions.
Also notable: Justin Lynskey (Massapequa, N.Y.), Alex Concannon (Syosset, N.Y.), Mike Dedvukaj (Yorktown, N.Y.).
Boys' Games to Watch
Ridgefield (Conn.) at Darien (Conn.), April 23
It's a matchup for early-season supremacy in the Nutmeg State. Darien is the traditional state powerhouse, while Ridgefield is the rising power. Each have some good early victories, including Darien's 11-5 win over Niskayuna (N.Y.) and Ridgefield's 8-7 decision against Garden City (N.Y.). The Blue Wave have won 27 straight entering this game, including last season's Class M state title. Both squads are in Class L this season.
Jamesville-DeWitt (N.Y.) at Fairport (N.Y.), April 25
The Red Rams are coming off a tough 12-11 overtime loss to West Genesee (N.Y.) and should be hungry to face a quality Fairport (N.Y.). Ryan Archer scored four goals for Jamesville-DeWitt in the West Genny loss. The Red Raiders are among the top teams in Section V (Rochester area) and should provide a good test. Fairport is trying to keep pace with undefeated Pittsford (N.Y.) in Section V Class A. The Panthers and Red Raiders meet earlier in the week in a key Monroe County battle.
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Apr 20, 2015
High School Highlights: Brunswick 9, New Canaan 7
Nike/LM Northeast Girls' Top 10
Girls' Northeast Player of the Week
Hanna Haven, Cicero-North Syracuse (N.Y.)
Haven scored one of the biggest goals of the season in Central New York. She netted the winner with four seconds left to help the Northstars upend West Genesee, 12-11. Haven, who is headed to James Madison, finished with three goals as the Northstars erased an 11-8 deficit with 14 minutes left. Goalie Bri Stahrr, who will suit up for Syracuse, made a number of point-blank saves late to preserve the win.
Also notable: Bri Stahrr (Cicero-North Syracuse, N.Y.), Kayla O'Connell (Honeoye Falls-Lima, N.Y.), Kerry Defliese (Garden City, N.Y.).
Photo: Gary Walts/Syracuse.com
1. Manhasset (N.Y.), 8-0
2. Garden City (N.Y.), 9-0
3. Darien (Conn.), 2-2
4. Wantagh (N.Y.), 10-0
5. West Genesee (N.Y.), 6-1
6. Victor (N.Y.), 5-1
7. Skaneateles (N.Y.), 4-2
8. Mt. Sinai (N.Y.), 6-0
9. St. Anthony's (N.Y.), 4-3
10. Cold Spring Harbor (N.Y.), 6-4
Cicero-North Syracuse (N.Y.) has won six straight since dropping a 12-11 triple overtime decision to Rochester-area powerhouse Honeoye Falls-Lima (N.Y.). C-NS is coming off a huge week that included big wins over rival West Genesee (N.Y.) and another Rochester-area standout in Brighton (N.Y.). The Northstars topped the Wildcats, 12-11, and then cruised to a 17-3 win over the Barons, and they now have placed themselves squarely in the discussion for inclusion in the national rankings as well. C-NS has a big week looming with matchups against Baldwinsville (N.Y.) and Skaneateles (N.Y.) on the slate.
After a 6-1 start, Cold Spring Harbor (N.Y.) now has dropped three straight, though each of those losses came against a highly respected opponent. The Seahawks fell 13-8 to D.C. area powerhouse St. Stephen's & St. Agnes (Va.). Wantagh (N.Y.) then escaped with a 13-12 decision over the Seahawks. Finally, Suffern earned a 10-8 decision over Cold Spring Harbor. Things get a bit easier this week as the Seahawks will look to rebound with games against Oceanside (N.Y.) and South Side (N.Y.).
Girls' Games to Watch
Manhasset (N.Y) at Suffern (N.Y.), April 23 and Suffern (N.Y.) at Garden City (N.Y.), April 25
The Mounties face a very daunting schedule this week. First, they have a date with 3-5 Clarkstown South (N.Y.), and then it's back-to-back games against the top two teams in the regional rankings. Suffern is no stranger to big games as it has advanced to the past two state Final Fours, but it will need a big effort to post wins in those two contests. Since starting 0-2, the Mounties have won five of six. That includes a big 10-8 win over Cold Spring Harbor (N.Y.). The only loss in that span is a 12-8 setback against Wantagh (N.Y.).
Notre Dame Academy (Mass.) at Darien (Conn.), April 23
This inter-state clash will feature two of the strongest programs in New England. The Cougars, coached by Meredith Frank, are coming off their first loss of the season, an 11-10 decision to undefeated Needham (Mass.). Coach Lisa Lindley's Darien squad has dropped games in the early going to the top two teams in the Northeast – Manhasset (N.Y.) and Garden City (N.Y.).
A pair of Long Island (N.Y.) goalies had big 20-plus save performances last week.
Bay Shore's Will DeCamp recorded 23 saves in an 8-7 win over Floyd (N.Y.). He stopped eight shots in the fourth quarter alone.
Patchogue-Medford's Matthew Barry made 20 saves in a 15-1 loss to Northport (N.Y.).
Nike/LM HS Northeast Report Archive
- April 14: Garden City's Hot Hand
- April 7: Manhasset Flexes Muscles
- March 31: 'Pequa Takes Early Showdown
- Preseason Top 10 and Players to Watch
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