Warriors take Ream Cup

By on April 29, 2015

 Edge closer to L-Ls with 13-3 win over Ephrata

Ephrata’s David Zimmerman (left) looks to scoop up the groundball in front of Warwick’s Brogan Galbreath during Monday’s contest in Lititz. (Photo by Preston Whitcraft)

Ephrata’s David Zimmerman (left) looks to scoop up the groundball in front of Warwick’s Brogan Galbreath during Monday’s contest in Lititz. (Photo by Preston Whitcraft)

Coming off its worst loss of the season&tstr;a crushing 15-1 blow last Thursday against unbeaten Hempfield&tstr; Warwick Boys Lacrosse Coach Wayne Hummer was eager to see how his squad would respond.

Turns out, he definitely liked what he saw.

Monday night in Lititz in a crucial game with playoff implications vs. Ephrata, the Warriors not only bounced back but dominated the Mounts from nearly start to finish in an eventual 13-3 victory.

Senior attacker Kobi Biemesderfer was the catalyst for Warwick, scoring five goals and adding two assists as the Warriors out-scored Ephrata 10-0 in the middle two quarters to break it wide open.

“Actually when we started I was getting a little nervous because it looked like things were moving a little slow,” Hummer said following the win. “The guys really just needed to calm down and stay the course. They were able to really engage with what was happening and make any adjustments that were necessary and had ourselves a nice little game.”

With the win, the Warriors (7-3 league, 10-4 overall) not only put themselves in the driver’s seat to lock down one of the four L-L League playoff spots, but also captured the Ream Cup&tstr; named after former Ephrata Coach Mike Ream and given to the winner of the annual contest&tstr; for the first time since 2010.

Warwick, Ephrata and Lampeter-Strasburg, all 7-3, are currently in a three-way tie for third place in the league behind fellow unbeatens Hempfield and Manheim Township. The Warriors can clinch a spot in the playoffs with wins in their remaining games at Conestoga Valley (2-9) Wednesday and Penn Manor (4-6) Friday.

“Coming down the home stretch, these games are crucial,” Hummer said. “Being that this was a league game after Hempfield, which was a league game…those league games are precious. They need to be won, and to be able to bounce back from a 15-1 loss…I mean, that (loss) was crushing. It was very upsetting to a lot of guys, I think tonight speaks to the resilience of the players and the way they are able to bounce back and put on a strong showing. And with it being Senior Night and a battle for the Ream Cup, it was pretty exciting for those guys.”

On the other side of the fence, the loss was crushing for Ephrata which could have clinched its spot in the playoffs with a win. The Mounts still are in good position for a playoff spot, however, since they hold the tiebreaker over L-S with games.

Still, this loss stung for various reasons.

“It’s real disappointing,” Ephrata Coach Eric Bensing said following the game. “We lost the Ream Cup, and we definitely didn’t want to do that. I know the guys didn’t either. (Warwick) outplayed us on both ends of the field tonight. I tried everything in my power to try to slow some of their momentum but they just were the better team tonight.”

After a deliberately played first period that saw each team get on the board just once, Warwick began to take control in the second as the Mounts started the quarter a man down due to the use of an illegal stick.

Warwick took advantage as Alex Dagen (3 goals, 1 assist) took a feed from Biemesderfer and beat Ephrata goalie Kyle Lindberg just after the restart to give the Warriors the 2-1 lead.

The Warriors seized the momentum from there, dominating time of possession while their defense continually forced Ephrata to the outside. Biemesderfer scored a pair of goals during that stretch before Dagen closed out the first-half scoring with a rip from the slot with 40 seconds to go which put his team up 5-1.

“Something we talk to our guys a lot about is having meaningful (offensive) possessions and being patient,” Hummer said. “Tonight they were able to do both of those things, and the end result was nice.”

Defensively, the Warriors held Ephrata to just three second quarter shots and not one got past Warwick goalie Cameron Epple, who faced 18 for the game and made seven saves.

“We knew they were going to press out on us,” Bensing said when asked about the Warwick defense. “We talked about it all week in practice before this game. We knew that’s what they were going to do and we worked on it in practice to try to get the guys use to it but it’s different when you are doing it against your own team vs. somebody else. We’ve not been taking real good care of the ball on several occasions this year, and tonight was just another one of those times.”

The Warriors put the game away in the third, outscoring the Mounts 6-0 in the period. Tyler Bogda tallied just 11 seconds in on an end to end rush. Then Brogan Galbreath, off a nice feed from Dagen, scored on a behind the back shot about a minute later to make it 7-1.

Galbreath, Dagen, Shane Galway and Biemesderfer later added goals for the Warriors as they closed the period with an 11-1 advantage.

Ephrata did add a pair of fourth-quarter scores by Austin Sensenig and Justin Hoover off a pair of assists from Ryan Holochuck. Both those goals, however, were sandwiched between Biemesderfer’s final two scores of the night to close out the impressive Warwick victory.

“They are good and are well-coached,” Bensing said of the Warriors. “Wayne always does a real nice job with them. They got some nice athletes on the team and their defense is really good. They do press out…they play the ball well and their offense really moves off ball well. It always gives us fits whenever we play them.”

While the loss hurt, Ephrata will try to put it in the rearview mirror and finish strong with a game Tuesday at home vs. Lancaster Mennonite (results from that game were unavailable at presstime) before Thursday’s regular-season finale at Manheim Township.

“We didn’t want to have to go into that game needing a win because they are really tough,” Bensing said. “And my guys are pretty beat down right about now. I know they are probably pretty dumpy about losing the Cup but we’ll come back again next year and try to remedy that.”

In addition to Monday’s game, Ephrata knocked off host Conestoga Valley last Wednesday by a score of 11-4.

The Mounts jumped out to a 6-1 lead after one quarter and did not look back en route to the easy victory.

David Zimmerman led the way for Ephrata with four goals while Justin Hoover added three talies. Brandon Adams chipped in with two goals to go along with four assists, while Austin Sensenig and Dustin Fisher rounded out the Ephrata scoring with single goals.

Kyle Lindberg made 10 saves in net to earn the victory.

Ephrata also was in action Saturday in a non-league contest at Mid-Penn power Cumberland Valley. Unfortunately, the host Eagles jumped out to a quick 10-0 lead and cruised to an eventual 19-3 victory over the Mounts.

Adams, Noah Roark and Ryan Holochuck accounted for the Ephrata goals while Sensenig and Fisher notched assists.

Lindberg made seven saves as CV out-shot Ephrata, 49-20.

Cocalico was in action last Thursday at home vs. Garden Spot where they rolled to a convincing 20-5 victory over the Spartans.

Cocalico had eight different goal scorers on the day with Brett Kupp’s six goals leading the way. Matt Weinhold added four scores while Devon Delpiano collected three goals and five assists on the afternoon.

Justin Marderness and Nick Harbst both had two goals while Ben Kegerise, Doug Quinn and Zack Anderson also got on the scoring sheet.

Ben Puodziunas made 11 saves to earn the win in goal for the Eagles.

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