Saint Andrew’s Cruises To 16-7 Win Over Spanish River

Written on . Posted in .

 

Spanish River started this season with high hopes, returning most of their key players from last season’s 13-6 team.

Last year they handled all the teams they should have beaten and their only losses were to teams that were highly ranked at some point this year:  Saint Andrew’s, Boca Raton, Benjamin, Columbus Catholic and Vero Beach.  They ran the table against everyone else, including District rival Pope John Paul II.  The Diamonds (Jake, Nick and Davis), Adrian Franzone, Colton Stanger.  Lots of supporting talent.

The lacrosse G*ds needed a sacrificial lamb.

And they found one.

No team was put through the emotional wringer like Spanish River was this year.  Maybe for many years.

The coach’s wife battled serious health issues all season.

A player’s Dad was killed in a biking accident last week.

The starting goalie broke his wrist in practice the day before the playoffs started.

And the promising season came to an end last night, anticlimactically.

It wouldn’t have been easy under the best of circumstances . . . Spanish River has never beaten Saint Andrew’s.  But there was hope because earlier in the year the two teams had played and it was a tied game late into the third quarter, and SA had only pulled away in the fourth after a scoring run early in the quarter jump-started by a 3-minute un-releasable penalty for an equipment issue.

But there were no miracles to be had last night.  The emotional well had run dry and you can’t really blame the kids.  Just too many things to mentally process. A shame Coach Brian Johnson had to go out like this.  But not all endings are Disney movies.

And besides, SA had a little to do with this.  They played one of their best games of the season.  And just took control early and often, never letting River get any inkling of a comeback. All the things Saint Andrew’s has struggled with in its losses were not in view last night.  10 different goal scorers hit the twine.  12 of the goals were assisted.  The offense moved the ball well.  The attack got more aggressive and took pressure off the midfield from having to create chances.  Addison Lutes (4G/3A) and Zach Schwartz (4G/1A) decided to take the mantle from Conor Whipple and Jake Levine and run with it.  Whether they do so again will decide how far SA can go this year.

Thursday’s championship game likely depends on it.

 

 

 

 

SA Poets Kennedy 414

 

This game basically mirrored what happened at the faceoff circle.  In the first half Alex Newhouse enjoyed a 10-3 first half advantage and the half ended at 9-3 SA.  Given that, River would have to play a pretty much perfect game, but that wasn’t in the cards. The first quarter ended with SA up 3-0.

Nothing particularly spectacular.  Just good ball movement.  Good, basic offense.  Move the ball quickly, get the defense moving, find the open man for step down shots or hit the cutter for inside looks.

And it worked.

At 9:46 Brandt Guldin opened the scoring as he took advantage of some space on the right wing and fired on the run, hitting the low corner from about 10 yards out.  At 6:17 Lutes took a behind the net feed from Schwartz on the right wing and hit the top left corner with the left hand for 2-0.  Then with 1:31 left Cole Mulligan took a left wing goal line extended feed from Lutes on the right side and hit the far side for 3-0, drawing a penalty on the play.

SA extended that lead with three quick goals to start the second and the game began to get away from River.  Just 5 seconds into the quarter Lutes picked up a loose ball on a rebound and finished from in front.  Just another 15 seconds later Conlon O’Hara, with the long pole, converted a middle feed from the right wing by Lutes to make it 5-0 and at 9:40 Lutes took a lengthy diagonal pass from Ben Kennedy on the right crease and finished all alone for 6-0. River then settled down and the teams traded goals the rest of the quarter to make it 9-3 at the half.  River got on the board at 6:46 as Adrian Franzone took Davis Diamond’s right GLE feed while cutting down the middle and Franzone finished with the right hand low to the left corner.  SA responded twice within 32 seconds to keep River from taking momentum.  First, Lutes took a feed in the middle of the defense from Jake LeGates on the right wing and went to the upper left corner at 5:27.  That was followed by Nate Low as he took Lutes’ right GLE feed up on the right wing and he hit the upper left corner for 8-1.  River responded with two of their own to cut the lead to 8-3.  At 3:06 Franzone converted in the middle off Colton Stanger’s right wing feed and 18 seconds later Diamond scored unassisted on a low shot off a right alley dodge.  But with 1:35 left SA again stifled any momentum as Keith Mahler scored unassisted on the EMO as he dodged to the middle from the left wing and fired high-to-high to the upper left corner and the half ended at 9-3.

 

SA Schwartz District River 414

 

The third quarter saw SA stretch its lead further.  At 6:13 Schwartz took a feed on the left wing from Mahler as he was cutting towards the net and he quick-sticked it into the goal.  less than a minute later it was 11-3 as Schwartz, working in the middle, took a left wing feed from LeGates and went to the low left corner at 3:30.  River got one back when Jonathan Spevachek took a left wing feed from Diamond as Diamond was dodging down the middle and Spevachek scored right-handed to send the game to the fourth with SA comfortably ahead 11-4.

SA broke the game wide open with three goals in 89 seconds to open the fourth and the teams traded some more goals later in the fourth to make the final 16-7. At 9:52 Guldin took a Nick Iznaga feed, followed at 9:11 by Schwartz unassisted and at 8:23 by Schwartz off another Guldin assist.  At 7:32 and 6:23 River’s EMO offense clicked twice on the same play, as Stanger took Diamond’s feeds to the right crease and converted both times.  Then at 5:18 William Leas got in the scorebook for SA off a Guldin feed and that was followed at 3:57 by Iznaga scoring off a Bobby Rauch pass.  Franzone then ended the scoring with an unassisted goal to make the final 16-7.

An uneventful fourth quarter as the scoring meant nothing to the outcome.

 

 

For Spanish River, a summer of wondering what might have been, and a summer of what does it all mean.  And for one coach and one player a summer of emotional hurt, one grieving and one praying.  With a lot of fans in this area willing to be there to lend a hand.  Good luck Brian and Jordan, there are plenty of us here for you.  And good luck to the seniors as they move on with their lives.  You will be much wiser for your experiences.

For Saint Andrew’s good luck with Thursday’s game as you continue your quest for District perfection.  This time it really will be earned the hard way.

 

Team Statistics

 

Faceoffs:  SA  17-9

Shots:  SA 43 – SR 32

Shots on Goal:  SA 27 – SR 17

Turnovers:  SA 16 – SR 13

Penalties:  SA 9 – SR 4

 

Individual Statistics

 

SA

Addison Lutes  4G/3A

Zach Schwartz  4G/1A

Brandt Guldin  2G/2A

Keith Mahler and Nick Iznaga  1G/1A each

Cole Mulligan, Conlon O’Hara, Nate Low and William Leas  1G each

Jake LeGates  2A

Bobby Rauch and Ben Kennedy  1A each

 

SR

Adrian Franzone  3G/1A

Davis Diamond  1G/4A

Colton Stanger  2G/1A

Jonathan Spevachek 1G

 

Connor Logan made 11 saves for SR and Connor Poetzinger made 10 saves for SA