As Predicted, Greeley vs. Yorktown in Class B; Carmel Makes History

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By Ray Gallagher, Examiner Sports Editor @Directrays
With three Rebel defenders ready to pounce Yorktown sophomore A James Carney cranks pivotal goal in top-seeded Huskes’ 10-5 win over visiting No.5 Lakeland-Panas Friday.

If you recall our late-March preview section, we pretty much predicted everything to a T in this here Boys’ Lax Notebook, especially in Class B where we stated the following: The fact that Mahopac lost so much to graduation across the field certainly opens the door for Horace Greeley to take aim at seven-time NYS champion Yorktown, which, after securing its 41st Section 1 crown remains the team to beat until proven otherwise. But, dang, Greeley is loaded at the top end – Matthew Byrne, Jameson Blakeslee, Jack Holub and Connor Lummel – and the Quakers have an anchor to boot in G Toby Moskow.

And here we are some nine weeks later on the precipice of all things predicted; No.3 HORACE GREELEY vs. No.1 YORKTOWN for all the marbles on Wednesday after the state-ranked (No.20) Quakers stormed past second-seeded, state-ranked (No.6) SOMERS, 12-6, and the state-ranked (No.7) Huskers poured it on fifth-seeded Lakeland/Panas in Friday’s 10-5 semifinal win at Charlie Murphy Field where the Huskers (13-5) were set to host the Quakers (13-5) for the right to rep in the NYSPHSAA tourney.

It’s some serious home cooking and we’re going to turn the stove up Wednesday in a bout we pretty much predicted, going back as far as late-2023 season.

Somers threw the kitchen sink at Greeley’s Jameson Blakeslee, including leaping M Dean Palazzolo, but it wasn’t enough to stop the third-seeded Quakers from knocking off No.2 Tuskers Friday in 12-6 semifinal win.

“We know how important this game is for us, so we have been working hard in practice and everyone is dialed in,” Husker captain Ryan Vogel said. “We have to just play our brand of lacrosse and not let the pressure of the big game get to us.”

Getting there was half the battle as Yorktown had to fend off a challenge from fifth-seeded Lakeland/Panas. Yorktown allowed the Rebels (9-9) to hang around for three-plus quarters before securing the five-goal win, enabling the Huskers to appear in their 44th consecutive sectional championship.

Yorktown senior M Drew Weissman was back in the lineup after missing six games with an ankle injury. He wasted no time producing and finished with a hat trick and two assists.

Sophomore J.T. Carney (3G) had his coming-out party, displaying more and more confidence with each game. Gianluca Marchini (2G), Dylan DelVecchio (1G) and Vogel (1G) all found the back of the net in support of G Hunter Mezzatesta (7 saves). Husker M Chad Bowen (13/16 FO) continued to look like one of the top faceoff guys in the section, affording the Huskers possession, which they’ll need more of in an effort to slow down Greeley.

Rebels Bubba Baumeister (2G), Kyle Gallagher (1G, 1A), Will Moore (1G), Vinny Savastano (1G) and Jack Jimenez (1A) found the scoresheet while goalie K.C. Bryan (11 saves) kept state-ranked (No.20) L/P in the hunt for three-plus quarters after a solid 2024 campaign.

Carmel M Jake Lotz is hunted by visiting No.3 Scarsdale’s stick-swinging Ben Fromme in the No.2-seeded Rams’ 10-7 Section 1 Class A semifinal win over the then two-time defending sectional champion Red Raiders.

Yorktown will be eyeing its 42nd Section 1 title while Greeley is gawking down the barrel of its first championship after taking out Somers, which picked a bad time for an off night.

“I feel like we are playing the best we have right now,” said Quaker sniper Jameson Blakeslee, who put four between the pipes and set up another. “We have really learned how to slow down the offense and play the game at our pace. Somers was a great team and so is Yorktown. I believe in our defense and goalie to stop transition. Yorktown also has a great defense and goalie so I’m excited to compete against them. I feel like this is definitely a winnable game and our team wants to make history.”

Greeley hasn’t had a sniff of history since 2006, its last championship appearance.

The Quakers will need to get more of the same, and then some, from the likes of Blakeslee, Connor Lummel (3G), Jack Holub (2G, 1A), Jason Kim (1G, 1A) and Tighe Dolan (1G), who kept a cushion between themselves and the Tuskers.

Quaker G Toby Moskow (14 saves) will need to put on another clinic, much like he did while containing Tusker hotshots Mac Sullivan (2G), Miguel Iglesias (1G, 1A), Cameron Violante (1G) and Grayden Carr (1G), who, despite a dominant performance from M Matt Mayfield (19 for 21 faceoff wins), found it tough to finish. Somers G Landon Pepe made seven saves.

Hard-charging Lakeland-Panas M Bubba Baumeister feels pinch of Yorktown D Conor Duncan and G Hunter Mezzatesta on a tone-setting play that drew the ire of 5th-seeded Rebels fans in their 10-5 loss to top-seeded Yorktown Friday.

While it wasn’t the ending Somers wanted, this unit changed the trajectory of the program, and started the climb toward its first sectional title since 2009.


In CARMEL’s first and only semifinal match Thursday, against reigning three-time Section 1 champion Scarsdale, Ram G Jake Meissner played a pivotal role, stopping 21 shots and scoring the first goal of his varsity career, lifting the history-making Rams (15-3) to their first championship appearance after a 10-7 triumph of the third-seeded Red Raiders.

“This group has been working toward this the last four years,” Carmel Coach Matt Caione said of his second-seeded Rams. “They have been asked to do more than their fair share and they’ve answered every time. I couldn’t be more proud of them. I want these guys to get everything they deserve

“It’s not alway noticed but Meissner does these things in every game to keep us in it,” Caione added. “If it wasn’t for him, a lot of these games that have gone our way wouldn’t have. I can’t say enough good things. He’s the heart of that defense back there.”

During the back-and-forth third quarter, Meissner went coast-to coast, unchecked, before cranking back and tickling twine, which turned out to be a game-changer for a Carmel club that mounted a fourth-quarter run behind its big guns.

Rhett Needleman got the Raiders within in the final minute of the third quarter before Meissner answered. The Rams’ big guns responded in kind: Matt Risley (3G, 2A) and Thomas Connolly (3G, 1A) were off the hook. Adam Boeheim (1G, 1A), Ryan Aabel (1G, 1A), Jake Lotz (1G, 1A) and Chris Nickerson (1A) all found the score sheet. Aabel was a menace at both ends of the field, displaying the kind of two-way play the Rams will need much more of in Tuesday’s championship against a Mamaroneck club that is equally hungry.

Hen Hud’s Drew Hiltsley cranks shot in Sailors’ Section 1 Class C title win over Sleepy Hollow.

The Tigers, who eliminated No.4 WHITE PLAINS, 17-2, have lost three-straight title tilts to Scarsdale after winning five between 2012 and 2019 while appearing in 10 of the last 11 championship games. They have pedigree on their side while Carmel has a ton of two-sport standouts that have specialized under the sectional championship heat of gridiron greatness the last few years. Carmel’s experience under pressure, coupled with a solid back line and a potent scoring attack should afford them the ability to challenge and compete for the title.

“Jake’s an amazing player, under the radar for sure,” the Wesleyan-bound Aable said of Meissner. “He’s had three playoff games of 20-plus saves and today he comes down and scores that goal. You can’t ask anything else from your goalie. It’s just so amazing to be going to the champion game. We’ve just put so much into getting here. Some of us have been here four years on varsity and seeing us evolve is just awesome. We’ve got another win in us for sure, ready for more history.”

Salisbury-bound M/A Risley, Fairfield-bound Connolly and Aable have been the face of that history. If this trio has its way Tuesday, the Carmel district, which could use a shot in the arm right now, could be hoisting the hardware.

“There’s nobody else we’d rather have in the cage than Jake,” Risley said. “He’s one of the most reliable players in Section 1. We wouldn’t trade him for the world. I’m just so proud to be doing this with the people I’m doing it with. I’ve been playing with these kids since kindergarten now and to be with them through this journey has been a blessing. I wouldn’t want to share the sidelines with anyone else, including our coaches, families and friends.

Cole Barnett of Westlake has a step on the defense as he moves toward the cage for a shot in the first quarter of last Monday’s quarterfinal playoff game. He had three goals and an assist in the Wildcats’ 14-7 win over Dobbs Ferry.

“Everybody in that locker room is cautiously confident,” Risley added. “When we come out and do what we’re capable of, we can play with anybody.”

Anybody and everybody who gives a rats rump #CarmelCrazies should make their way to Charlie Murphy Field for today’s 6:30 title tilt.


State-ranked (No.2) PLEASANTVILLE made short work of HALDANE in the top-seeded Panthers’ 19-4 win over the fifth-seeded Blue Devils.

Panthers Daniel Picart (5G, 1A), Erik Coleman (3G, 1A), Aidan Cotter (4G, 1A),  Nick Reich (3G) and David Hundzynski (2G, 1A) scored multiple points as the Panthers advanced to Tuesday’s 4:00 p.m. championship against No.3 Bronxville at Charlie Murphy Field.

Emmet McDermott (1A), Braden Feeney (1G) and Hank McCourtney (1G) also scored for the Panthers, who stood tall defensively in front of G Andrew Nessel (9 saves).

Frank DiGilio (2G) led the Blue Devils, who finished up a solid campaign.

No.2 WESTLAKE suffered its first loss of season, falling short in a 13-7 semifinal loss to Bronxville despite the multi-point efforts from Stephen DiNapoli (2G), Cole Barnett (1G, 3A), Nicholas DiNapoli (2G), Chris Kalle (1G, 1A) and Isaiah Rivera (1G, 1A).

Carmel A Thomas Connolly lines up an early crank in second-seeded Rams’ 10-7 Section 1 Class A semifinal win over No.3 visiting Scarsdale Thursday.


No.4 HEN HUD had its solid season come to an end in a 14-3 semifinal loss to top-seeded finalist John Jay CR. The Sailors worked No.5 Sleepy Hollow in a 12-8 win after falling behind by three goals to open the game.

Kevin Ryan (4G,1A), Drew Hiltsley (4G), James McManus (4A), Conor Prokopiak (2G, 1A) and Dean Pastolove (2G, 1A) paced the Sailors.



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