Week of 4/18 Lacrosse Rundown

Teams are starting to show their true colors now that the lacrosse season is a few weeks old. Some have flied off the start with undefeated or one loss records while others have stumbled. Here’s how each team has fared so far and what they have to look for in the coming week:

#2 Deerfield

An impressive 15-5 victory over Choate Rosemary Hall lifted Deerfield to 5-0 on the season. Thus far, Deerfield’s offense has outscored opponents by a whopping 65-30 margin. The team faces two strong tests against #25 T. on Wednesday, and #10 Taft on Saturday to prove they belong in the number two spot. The team will look to Postgraduate, Under Armour All American and Duke Commit Joe Manow to keep producing and keep Deerfield’s scoring pace at a blistering rate. 

#10 Taft

This past Wednesday Taft fell to #12 Brunswick in an 9-8 OT battle, though they strongly rebounded Saturday as they topped Westminster 12-6. Taft is guided by a powerful offense lead by sophomore Jack Collins (Bucknell), Matt Davies (Richmond), and Post Graduate Michael Kraus (Virginia). Taft attackman Justin Meichner (Georgetown) will be missed as he suffered an ACL tear before the season’s start.

The Rhinos will look to build some momentum off the win at Westminster with another at Millbrook. That will be important to come in hot against a very talented Deerfield squad on Saturday.

#12 Brunswick

The (5-2) Brunswick Bruins, fell to New Canaan on Saturday by a score of 8-13. Despite that letdown, the Bruins won a tight one in Waterbury against Taft. The Bruins pulled out a gritty win in OT to show they have the ability to win those close games. That skill should be key later in the season in some big match-ups against Avon, Salisbury, and TP. 

 The Bruins base their offense around their dynamic star mid-fielder Reilly Walsh (Duke). Walsh has contributed to much of  Brunswicks’ success in years past. Walsh enters Recruiting Expert Ty Xanders Top 100 Seniors List at #3. On defense, the Bears are lead by goaltender Jack Stephenson (Georgetown). Stephenson has also been recognized by Ty Xanders as he lines in at #46. With these two stars, Brunswick has found an even balance of strong defence and striking offense. 

The Bruins will look to rebound from the New Canaan loss with games against Lawrenceville this Wednesday and Hotchkiss this Saturday. 

#25 Trinity Pawling

TP has come out to an impressive (4-1) start. That will be tested, however, as they face arguably the best prep team in New England right now in Deerfield on Wednesday. That will be a big measuring stick as to where this team is, and a win would certainly rocket the Pride up the rankings. They follow that contest up with Founders League Rival Westminster this Saturday.

The Pride credit a large portion of their success their composed defense, backed by Goalie Caelahn Bullen (Cornell). This has especially shown in their past two wins against Gunnery and Canterbury by only allowing a combined six goals in those two contests. That defense will need to hold up against a prolific Deerfield offense. 

#58 Salisbury School

Salisbury has had an up-and-down start to the season with wins against Trinity-Pawling and Brewster equalled by losses to Haverford and Berkshire. Salisbury’s success on the offensive side is on account of attackmen Matt Gaude ’16 (Yale), Troy Lauder ’17 (Syracuse), and midfielder John Lombardi ’18 (Michigan).

They will look to string some wins together when they play Westminster on Wednesday and Loomis on Saturday. The Knights will have to make a move now to live up to their preseason hype. 

#70 Avon Old Farms

The Winged Beavers have begun their New England title defense with an impressive 5-0 start, with a recent 6-3 win over Tabor Academy. Avon’s success is on account of attackman Ryan Lanchbury ’17 (Richmond) and midfielder Jon Creed ’16 (Conn College). The Beavers also cherish their composed defense lead by defenseman Jimmy Littlefield ’17 (Notre Dame) and goalie Owen McElroy ’17 (Georgetown).

Despite their 5-0 record, Avon has yet to play anyone ranked in the top 100 of New England as their tough games come all at the end of the season. They play a brutal five game stretch against TP, Brunswick, Deerfield, Taft, and Salisbury. That is where Avon’s young group will truly be tested. This week they have only one matchup when they host Choate on Saturday.

#91 Loomis Chaffee

The Pelicans season has been anything but consistent through the first seven games. They started out their season losing two close ones and finally secured their first win with a morale-boosting 11-3 win against #162 Millbrook. That momentum was quickly quelled by powerhouses Trinity-Pawling and Brunswick who are ranked 25 and 12, respectively. Just a week later, Loomis had responded with two wins to teams currently ranked behind them to propel them into the top 100 in New England.

This week, the Pelicans will look to scoot past winless Kent before a big matchup against #58 Salisbury on the road. A win there would be a big boost heading into the second half of the season.

#123 Westminster  

The Martlets came knocking at the door of undefeated Deerfield in their first game of the year but woundAOF WESTY up coming up short in that 10-6 loss. They proceeded to just squeak past the Wild Boars of Choate before being doubled up by #10 Taft.

Unfortunately for Westy, their schedule does not get any easier in the upcoming week with two games on the road against #53 Salisbury and #25 TP on Wednesday and Saturday, respectively. How they fare in those matchups will be telling as they attempt to pull off a pair of upsets. A win in either of those games could boost the confidence level of this team heading into the second half.

#133 Choate

With a 3-2 record coming into the season, the Wild Boars are looking sharp. With a one goal loss to Westminster they have the potential to be a real threat in the season. Their offense relies on Brian Willetts, Ty Xanders No. 6 senior going to UNC. He is a major generator of goals. This week, they travel to Avon Old Farms for their lone game of the week.

#172 Hotchkiss

The Bearcats finally righted the ship with a thorough victory against NMH, 13-0. This could be a big turning point for them as they started out their season with losses to Millbrook and Loomis. It is imperative that they take some momentum from this win into their Wednesday matchup against #153 Berkshire as they will need it for #12 Brunswick. This week will be telling as to just how competitive Hotchkiss is this year as they strive to avoid two straight losing seasons in a row.

By Jake de Saint Phalle, Bart Gardella, and Henry Spearman

Note: Rankings taken from laxpower.com.