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Brockport can't overcome slow start

By: Dylan O'Loughlin

BROCKPORT, NY --- It was a rainy evening as the Brockport Blue Devils boys varsity lacrosse team hosted Eastridge/RCSD United. The Blue Devils got going in the fourth quarter, but it wasn't enough as they fell 10-4.

Brockport (White) and Eastridge/RCSD (Black) meeting at midfield pregame. Photo Credits: Dylan O'Loughlin 89.1 the Point

"I think just think lapses," head coach of the Brockport Blue Devils Jeffrey Jung said. "I think we turned the ball over too much on clears in terms of getting the ball over midfield, getting our attackmen a touch. Our attackmen and our defense are our strong suit right, and we didn't get it through our attackmen a lot in the first half and that kind of cost us some goal opportunities."

It was a very physical game in the wet conditions as both teams delivered body blows that knocked each other to the ground. Neither team got anything going in the first period and the ball stayed at midfield for most of the time. Eastridge called an early timeout with 6:18 remaining in the period and they never looked back.

After missed shots and turnovers from each side, Eastridge/RCSD United got on the board first with 1:46 remaining after a goal by senior midfielder Nkodia Ndongala. Just under a minute later, the Lancers put the ball in the net again, this time by junior attacker Josh Verna.

In the second, the Lancers carried their momentum. After two different players scored in the first, four more players left their mark on the second. They started the period with a goal at the 11:08 mark by junior attacker Colton Flannery. Then freshman midfielder Jahyden Maiorani scored with eight minutes left. Brockport kept playing physically, but Eastridge/RCSD United maintained possession throughout the quarter. Scoring slowed until Eastridge/RCSD United struck with 3:09 remaining at the hands of freshman attacker John Hart. Then, 30 seconds later sophomore midfielder Latoine Brown put another one in the goal with two and a half left in the half remaining. Brockport tried to get out of the rough period with a 6-0 deficit, but with six seconds remaining, Verna snuck the ball in the back of the net once again on a last-second shot.

Second quarter action. Photo Credits: Dylan O'Loughlin 89.1 the Point

"We couldn't get it past our 50, we were getting it to our poles," Brockport freshman defender Mason Scott said. "We were just juggling it behind half, not getting a touch, turning it over on fast breaks. They used the fastbreaks and scored off them and we didn't have many, so they used theirs and we didn't."

The third period saw little action. Both teams' defensive intensity picked up as the rain got lighter. The Lancers started the second half goal-scoring with one by Flannery. Maiorani obtained his second goal of the contest before the period concluded.

In the fourth period, the Brockport offense came to life. It all started with senior attacker Thomas Bruno as he was able to break the scoring seal and put one in the back of the net with 9:46 remaining. The Lancers answered right back with a goal from their seventh different scorer of the game, junior midfielder Jeremiah Tucker. That didn't stall the Brockport offense though, as Bruno answered again with six minutes left.

"That shooting space was just kind of there," Bruno said. "I ran up, I saw the open space, I had the angle. A high-angle shot is a shot I have practiced a lot, so I was confident in getting it and the guy didn't get on my hands in time, so I just ripped it."

The scoring got contagious after that. Within a minute, Brockport sophomore attacker Ryan Miller scored two goals.

Both teams battling for the ball during face-off. Photo Credits: Dylan O'Loughlin 89.1 the Point

"Fourth quarter went really well for us," Jung said. "We didn't hang our heads on what happened in the first few quarters. They had some lackluster goals, but at the end of the day we didn't hang our heads. We came in the fourth quarter and played confident across, started dodging some people and put the ball in the net. Only thing we can do is really build on that for next game. It's important that we are locking in every single day of practice. That's kind of what led to the start today, but at the end of the day, we have to be dialed in all throughout every single practice. But yeah, the way we finished today was very encouraging."

Eastridge/RCSD United improved their record to 4-0 on the young season. On the Brockport side, the Blue Devils fall to 0-2 on the season and look to get in the win column Saturday, April 13 as they host Churchville-Chili. First face-off is scheduled for 11:00 a.m.

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