Lakeland/Panas Topples Mamaroneck, Continues to Ascend Among Section 1 Ranks
Two potential obstacles in Yorktown’s playoff path were put on Husker Coach Sean Carney’s regular season schedule, including likely Section 1 championship foe John Jay CR and reigning NYS Class B champion Jamesville DeWitt, and Yorktown made sure that each knew who’s steering the ship this spring in a pair of resounding wins.
The Huskers (4-2) worked a 15-11 win over J-D by hitting a solid 58% of their shots, including three goals apiece from Shane Dahlke and Kyle Casey (1A). Jamison Embury (2G, 4A) went all ballistic on J-D, too. Justin Cavallo and Hunter Embury each scored twice for the Huskers, who saw G Louis Ragusa make 13 saves and M Anthony Altimari win 14 of 22 faceoffs by scooping nine GBs. Then, Yorktown followed that up with an 11-10 come-from-behind win over Jay, which squandered a five-goal lead after looking like the better team on the field for the game’s first three quarters.
But Albany-bound Yorktown senior Kyle Casey erupted for three goals in the comeback effort, putting the Huskers on his back and Section 1 on notice; Yorktown is still the team to beat in this neck of the woods. Casey’s final tally was the last of six unanswered Huskers goals with 2:31 to play on Saturday at Charlie Murphy Field.
“That’s the best team, the best program and the best players in the section, maybe the state,” said John Jay boss Tim Schurr, himself a former Husker All-American. “We played three great quarters but last time I checked it took four to win. They must be better than us because we never beat them. They win all the games. They are a better program. Their better coached. Give them credit. Offensively, they pushed the ball very well in the late states, and Casey is really good this year, twice the player he was last year. He’s so strong. We had to play a lot of defense and need to get better to beat these guys should we be lucky enough to see them again.”
Yorktown slept-walked through the first three, enabling Jay to take a 10-5 lead while taking it to the Huskers in every phase of the game, until Casey and Husker sophomore Shane Dahlke took over.
“I tried not to show too much emotion,” Casey of the game-winner in the waning moments. “But that goal, especially against John Jay, made us feel a whole lot better. I let it all loose. I know if I can get to my spots, I can get a shot off and hopefully they go in.”
Dahlke finished a feed from Dom Cioffi to tie it at 10-all. Dahlke, who had scored twice earlier to make it 10-8 and 10-6, looked the part of an up-and-comer, a legit stud. Jamison Embury also bagged a hat trick for the slithery Huskers, who, truth be told, were outworked for three quarters.
“We need to play better, for sure,” Husker Coach Sean Carney admitted. “It was good for us to learn that we can fight back if we have to, that’s always a valuable lesson. I just don’t want to make it habit.”
The fact that a healthy Notre Dame-bound All-American D Jose Boyer and stout Maryland-bound D Brett Makar were finally side by side on the field is no coincidence to the Huskers matching their capabilities. When these two are in front of G Louis Ragusa, the Huskers are complete on the back line, but nothing was going right through three quarters against the Indians, who, mark our words, are self-possessed to shed the Yorktown monkey from its back. Having lost to the Huskers for a 13th-straight time dating back to 2010, including five straight title tilts from 2011-16, Jay appeared to have inched closer. And when Syracuse-bound junior G Shahe Katchadurian, who was benched for the Yorktown game, is back between the pipes, Jay’s chances, debatably, will get better, so the last thing Yorktown can afford would be another five-goal deficit should they meet again.
“We came out of the gate slow and we knew they were going to be fired up,” Makar said. “That really put us in trouble against a team like John Jay. We said at halftime that we’ve come back from worse than this, and this is what we work for, to be in games like this on Murphy Field. We just believed in each other and came out firing.
“Casey was awesome,” Makar, an All-American-in-waiting, added. “He’s a leader, and when he makes plays like that guys want to follow. He’s a leader on this team, a senior captain and we expect that from him. Justin Cavallo and Kyle bring us a physical presence on offense, they’re beasts who are always ready to make plays. In the first half we were losing groundballs and 50-50s and we weren’t backing up our goalie, Louis Ragusa. We were giving up wide open shots in front of him, so we decided that’s not how we roll and came out physical in the second half, and if we were going to give up goals they were going to have to pay for them.”
Seems most everybody in Section 1 pays dearly at some point…
LAKELAND/PANAS has always played second fiddle to Yorktown, but it’s high time we give the reigning Class A champion Rebels (6-0) some dang respect after they pared the fat off the regular-season trimmings with a 12-10 victory over 2016 runner-up Mamaroneck and followed that up with a 12-4 triumph of perennial Section 5 powerhouse Penn Yan Saturday.
Coach Jim Lindsay’s Rebels have the kind of proficiency that has some in the business wondering if they might have enough in the tank to contend with Yorktown in the annual Murphy Cup game on May 5th. Win or lose, this scribe could care less: Lakeland/Panas needs to be respected for what it currently is; among the top three programs in Section 1 history.
Living in the shadows of Yorktown isn’t easy, but the Rebels have gone about their business methodically and respectfully under Lindsay and his staff. It’s high time we give a nod to that and the work they’re doing. Junior sniper JoJo Janavey jumped all over Penn Yan for four goals and an assist while seniors Sean Makar and Tim Fallo worked in concert, both going for three goals and four assists. Drew Thompson scored twice.
Sophomore TJ Bryan won 20 of 25 faceoffs and scored twice for the Rebels against Mamaroneck, so the Rebs will hope to exploit Yorktown at the X in the Murphy Cup game, which would really have some juice if the Rebs were to somehow come in at 12-0. That won’t be easy with Mahopac, Rye, improving Pelham and Somers upcoming. If the Rebels play like they did against Mamaroneck, someone will pick them off. Coach Lindsay was less-than-impressed with the sloppy, inconsistent effort despite Janavey’s four goals and one assist. Makar added two goals and three assists. LSM Griff Shiland, who we love to watch go coast to coast, bagged two goals and Reb G Kevin Dyckman had nine saves…
SOMERS is pretty dang good this season; the only problem is there may be two teams better than Coach Vin DeGregorio’s Tuskers (3-4). Still, Somers will be the team both Yorktown and John Jay hope to avoid in the semifinal round of the Class B playoffs after the Tuskers knocked off Mahopac, 6-5, last week…
MAHOPAC’s current three-game skid – including Mamaroneck, Somers and Suffern (what up with that one?) — could get up to five this week if the Indians (2-4) can’t stop the bleeding against Yorktown and Lakeland/Panas this week. 2-6 is not what the program hierarchy was expecting…
Never thought we’d see the day when three quality programs like HEN HUD (1-3), BREWSTER (1-6) and PUTNAM VALLEY (1-4) were a combined 3-13, and momma always said, “If ya ain’t got nothing nice to say, keep your yap shut!” Not quite as cave-womanish but you catch the drift. The Sailors did restore some order in a 15-7 win over Carmel (5-2) when Connor Gallagher (4G, 4A) and Bryce Caffrey (3G, 1A) got unleased.