There is an old adage that you need to play four strong quarters to win a game. For Poly Prep all it took was one spectacular one.
“That was the best we played all season,” junior attack Max Goupit said. “It was the perfect moment for it, too. We knew we were a better team than Hackley and we proved it today.”
The Blue Devils dominated the second quarter. They scored seven times, including six straight goals, while limiting top-seeded Hackley to just one to take a six-goal lead the half. The Hornets made a run back at them after the break, but goalie Dylan Moser played through injury and came up a huge save in the final minute. It helped preserve No. 3 Poly’s 11-9 win in the New York State Association of Independent Schools Athletic Association boys lacrosse final on May 25 at Manhattanville College. It is the school’s first crown since 2006.
“I know every guy on the team was dreaming about the feeling,” junior midfielder Hugo Francis said. “To have that feeling realized is just great.”
Francis was the rally starter with three goals and two assists. He fed Goupit (three goals) for a score with 24.3 seconds left in the first quarter, but Hackley tied the score at 3 early in the second period on one of Austin Pidoriano’s four scores. From then until the end of the half it was all Poly.
Francis jammed a shot on the crease into the top right corner, used a fake and then hit a wide open Sam Bernstein for one of his three goals to the left of the next and then score with the goalie out of the crease on a feed from Anthony Reyes to put Poly (17-3) up 6-3 with 5:12 left in the half.
The barrage continued as the ball stayed almost exclusively in the Poly end. Brian Ingrassia, Francis and Goupit all scored in the final two minutes to extend the lead to 9-3. Hackley’s next goal came off the stick of Teddy Seem with 45.5 seconds left, but Goupit sent Poly flying into the half up 9-4 with a score with just 22.8 remaining.
“From defense to offense it was a perfect game,” Blue Devils coach Brooks Sweet said.
Hackley (17-3), which won both regular season meetings, was not going quietly as it cut the lead to 10-7 midway through the third quarter. Poly got its final goal from Bernstein with 7:52 left in the fourth, but Pidoriano picked up a ground ball in front of the net and scored and James Sheldon fed him on the crease for a goal to make it 11-9 with 1:03 to play. Teddy Seem added three goals for the Hornets, who lost in last year’s final.
It appeared they would have a chance at a last ditch chance to tie the score. Moser didn’t let that happen.
Playing with a stress fracture in his back he suffered on May 11, he stoned Leo Barse on the crease with 30 seconds remaining. The freshman, who saw JV call up Anthony Narin win the first two playoff games, wasn’t even sure if he would have a chance to play, but was cleared to go and got the OK from Sweet.
He did a few victory laps around the crease to run out the clock before eventually flinging the ball down field. Then the celebration and the pile up was on to the right of the nets. The Blue Devils were champs.