Lacrosse: Taft upset, Lauder powers Knights past Westy late and more

Another week of prep school lacrosse, another upset. Parity in the Founders League and associated schools is abundant as teams jockey for early-season success.

Here’s how it all played out:

Millbrook 10-6 Taft

In the upset of the week, the Taft Rhinos fell 10-6 to a Millbrook team not typically accustomed to topping Founders League opponents.

Sloppy play plagued the young Taft team, and Millbrook capitalized on every opportunity that fell their way. So far, Taft has lost on every Wednesday they have played this season and cannot seem to get a streak going despite showing a plethora of talent.

Defeating Westminster was definitely a highlight for the Rhinos in the season thus far, but Taft needs to win games against teams like Millbrook to truly contend for a New England or Founders League Championship.

Salisbury 10-7 Westminster

Coming fresh off of an upsetting loss to Taft, Westminster dropped another close game against a talented Salisbury team. Led by a strong four-point performance from Troy Lauder ‘16 (Syracuse), Salisbury pulled themselves out of a three-goal deficit.

Despite a stellar start for Westy’s Brian Smyth ‘16 (Duke), who scored four goals on his first four shots, the Martlet’s defense simply could not hold off a talented Salisbury squad. In addition to Smyth’s performance, Jack O’Connell ‘15 (Dickinson) netted three in a row himself. Two players, however, cannot win a game.

Salisbury won this game because they can score from a multitude of players. Lauder ‘16, Bradley Voigt ‘15 (Syracuse), Duncan Hoskinson ‘15 (Colgate), Matt Gaudet ‘16 (Syracuse), and Eric Zimm ‘16 all notched points on the board. A big win for Salisbury takes them out of the first section of their season and onto some strong, but beatable teams for now.

Hotchkiss 10-8 Berkshire

The Bearcats put together their second win in a row over Berkshire on Wednesday.

Despite beginning the season with a four-loss streak, Hotchkiss shows major signs of improvement as they approach the meat of their season. Over the next three weeks, Hotchkiss will face Brunswick, Salisbury, Avon, and Deerfield. Going into these games with a few wins and some tough losses could fuel some potential upsets as the Bearcats begin to face their toughest opponents in the near future.

Deerfield 10-2 Trinity-Pawling

A big win over Choate catapulted the Green Doors to victory over Trinity-Pawling. Coming off of a 22-4 win over Canterbury, the Pride simply could not get the ball past Deerfield’s goalie Philip Goss ‘16 (Brown).

Both teams must look on to their future match ups though to build on both failures and successes. Deerfield faces a strong Taft team who is thirsty for blood after being upset by Millbrook. Trinity-Pawling will play rival Westminster in a Founders League matchup that will come down to who makes the least mistakes.

Choate 18-4 Gunnery

Choate took control of their game against Gunnery on Wednesday. Scoring early and often throughout, the Wild Boars showed their offensive firepower and stellar goaltending from Turner Uppgren ‘15 (Duke).

Even as Choate worked in their bench, Gunnery still could not string together much on either side of the ball the entire day. With an almost identical score to Choate’s upcoming that Founders League opponent Avon Old Farms had against Bridgton (below) the Wild Boars seem to be an even match for a strong Winged Beavers team that has yet to face a tough opponent in New England.

This Saturday’s game between Choate and AOF will be a battle of the goalies and the victor will win purely on hustle.

Avon Old Farms 18-5 Bridgton Academy

Avon Old Farms won its fifth straight game this weekend against a chippy Bridgton Academy team. Penalties lost the game for Bridgton as the they became completely unraveled after the first quarter when the score was tied at 3-3. The Winged Beavers pumped in goal after goal despite being on the receiving end of some glaring fouls and was able to fend off some man-up chances for Bridgton during the second and third quarters. This game brought up Avon’s goal total to 87, which is the most out of any team in New England right now. In addition to that statistic, Avon has yet to be held to under double digits and can clearly score on command. The easy part of Avon’s season, however, is done. This Saturday, the Winged Beavers travel to Choate and will face a comparable opponent.

Loomis Chaffee 12-6 Kent

This year’s unexpected “dark horse” team has been Loomis Chaffee. The Pelicans have not won five games since 2011, and to everyone’s amazement, still only have one loss.

To put things into perspective, Loomis Chaffee has not had a winning season since 2008.

This year, they are on track to make some serious upsets and should not be taken lightly by any team. The Pelicans need to capitalize this Saturday against Salisbury though if they are to truly establish themselves as a force this year.