Eagles take down Comets

By on April 8, 2015
Cocalico’s Mitchell North (right) makes a charge up the field during Monday’s game vs. Berks Catholic. (Photo by Dick Wanner)

Cocalico’s Mitchell North (right) makes a charge up the field during Monday’s game vs. Berks Catholic. (Photo by Dick Wanner)

“Lacrosse is hands down, all about momentum,” said Cocalico Boy’s Coach Matt Oberly, after his team had beaten Penn Manor last Thursday in Denver 13-5. The game itself certainly bore that out when the Eagles found the net for five-straight goals to start the game and duplicated the feat to start the second half.

Out-shooting the Comets 29-20, seniors Brett Kupp and Devon Delpiano topped the score sheet with four goals apiece, while fellow senior Justin Marderness tallied two. Seniors Doug Quinn, Kody Dale and Matt Weinhold had one each to complete the scoring. Junior Zach Anderson, senior Ben Kegerise along with Marderniss and Dale had helpers to set up the goal scorers.

“You know that we’re playing well when the goals are not going in unassisted,” replied Oberly. “We have to prevent shots from in close and on offense we have to have ball movement.”

The win puts Cocalico (2-1 League, 3-2 overall) in position to contend for one of the four playoff spots from the Lancaster-Lebanon League, now a single division league.

The backbone of the Eagles’ defense is sophomore goalie Ben Puodziunas, who stopped 17 Comet shots in the win.

“He eats and sleeps lacrosse goalie,” said Oberly of his netminder. “He doesn’t give the other team opportunities for an easy goal. In my mind, he’s the best in the league. He’s already being recruited by colleges.”

“We have a lot of players that compete in other sports,” explained Oberly. “That is a challenge when you compete with bigger schools, but it makes for a better high school experience.”

One of those bigger schools (Hempfield) handed the Eagles their only loss last Wednesday, turning a 3-3 first period tie into a 18-9 Black Knight victory.

Marderness and Delpiano led the offense with two goals and one assist each.

So, how does the coach see this unit after winning three of the first four games?

“Our goal is to win the games that we won last year, and win three that we lost,” said Oberly. “Penn Manor was one of those losses. The kids have really bought into the system, and we are consistently playing better in the second halves of the games.”

Monday afternoon in a non-league contest at home against Berks Catholic, the visitors got up on the Eagles early and kept them at arm’s distance the rest of the way to earn a 15-9 decision over Cocalico.

Kupp scored three goals while Delpiano had two goals and a pair of assists in the loss.

Up next for the Eagles is today’s (Wednesday) rivalry game at Ephrata and a second road match at Lancaster Mennonite on Friday. Cocalico returns home Monday to host Conestoga Valley. Perhaps the momentum has swung for the blue and white.

As for Ephrata, the Mounts dropped their only match of the week, losing a 16-8 decision to Elizabethtown last Thursday.

The visiting Bears took a 10-4 lead into the half and did not look back as they handed Ephrata its first league loss.

Colin Caummauf, Austin Sensenig and Ryan Holochuck each had two goals to pace the Mounts (3-2 overall, 2-1 league). Justin Hoover chipped in with a goal and two assists.

Elizabethtown (3-2 overall, 3-1 league) got a big game from Gage Bootay, who scored five goals and assisted on three other tallies. Ephrata goalie Kyle Lindberg made 10 saves in the loss.

In addition to Wednesday’s clash with Cocalico, the Mounts travel to Penn Manor Friday (4 p.m.), Wilson Saturday night (7:15 p.m.) and Lancaster Catholic next Tuesday at 4 p.m.

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