Above – Madlax players celebrate their HS Elite Division championship
Madlax took on the West Florida Lacrosse Club’s very talented 2016/2017 team in the Championship game of the HS Elite Division at the Gulf Coast Classic held on Saturday in Naples.
West Florida looked in control early in the game with possesions off of Matty Bleckley face-offs and quick scoring from Ian Lucas (Newsome HS) and Nick Thanasides (Tampa Jesuit,) two impressive rising juniors. After a bit of a slow start, Zach Woods and Michael Nathan, two senior All American’s from Barron Collier stiffened up the defense. Zach Woods in the goal made some pivotal saves and started taking better care of the ball.
Early in the second half Madlax got a little run going including a nice BTB goal from Jack Gray. Luke Curran was winning some face-offs and Madlax was able to get a decent lead.
But throughout the game I could not help but be impressed with the goal tending of rising freshmen Alex Cordero for West Florida. The youngster, who will be entering Durant High School in the fall has yet to play a high school lacrosse game. He was out there playing solid, keeping his composure, and started stuffing some shots. At the other end of the field Ian Lukas wasn’t done either. He got some late goals and eventually West Florida had the lead once again.
Madlax’s Luke Curran (Gulf Coast HS), had a big game won three very important face offs at the end when his team really needed the ball. On a late EMO play, Michael Nathan, a D-Pole who plays on the EMO team and can really shoot, got free at the top of the box and fired one low to tie it up for Madlax.
Bleckley won the ensuing face-off out to his wingman but Michale Nathan was right there to strip the ball away and get it down the field where he dished off to Pat Mahoney who scored the game winner.