Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 10/27/10
Host Downingtown West defeated Springfield-Delco, 9-5, Saturday to claim the “A” Division title in the 7th annual Brian Houshower Lacrosse Festival.
The event featured 24 teams overall and 18 in the “A” Division. The festival honors the memory of the former Downingtown West student-athlete who died seven years ago in an automobile accident.
Downingtown West opened with a tough 4-3 victory over Council Rock North and then blanked the Patriots of Freehold, N.J., 14-0 and whipped Vahalla of Elkton, Md., 10-4. In the semifinals, Downingtown West handled rival Downingtown East, 12-0.
The championship was fueled by a total team effort, led by seniors Dustin Keen, Brad Shenberger, Nick Funkhouser, Aidan Conti, Max Dawson, Kevin Buffington and Zack Logan. John Hochhaus was the coach.
The team struggled early in the tourney, but gained momentum as the games progressed. Keen and junior Alex Cuttic were strong in the goal, splitting time and making huge saves when needed. Defensively, Mike Paoline (junior) and Logan Richter (junior) played well at close defense with help from Aidan Conti (senior) and Evan Wolf (sophomore).
Max Dawson (senior) and Damon Leeper (senior) were strong in scooping groundballs at long stick midfield and helped Downingtown West gain possessions on the face-offs. Funkhouser, Tim Roberts (junior) and Matt Smidline (sophomore) were strong at the face-off X.
At midfield Sam Beneke (junior) had a strong all-around game, creating scoring opportunities and also scoring a few important goals himself. Also playing strong at midfield were Eric Rankel (junior) and Tyler Keen (sophomore) and Logan.
Logan put the team ahead for good in the finals with a nice roll dodge. The title was sweet for Downingtown West, which fell to Avon Grove in the finals last year.
Other key contributors to the title were Tyler McWilliams, Max Carrol, Tyler Keen, Matt Logan, Ryan Hibbs, Tim Roberts, Dylan Ikkla, Jim Shaer and Evan Muntz.