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Shipley School boys used camaraderie to help win third straight Friends Schools League championship

Thursday, 26th May 2011

Categories Boy's/Men's, Features, High School  
 

By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/26/11

The Shipley School boys’ lacrosse team claimed its third straight Friends Schools League championship Saturday when the host Gators toppled Academy of the New Church, 15-6.

The 2011 Friends Schools League champions: Back Row (L-R) Coach Mark Duncan, Coach Dave Rauch, Ethan Bradlow, Nick Piasecki, Tyler Walsh, Jon Messerschmidt, Evan Romano, Jamie Piltch, Steve Gentry, Ian McGibbon, Dan Gordon, Luke Massengill, Drew Schwartz, Ian Mercier, Mike Litner, Mike Gagnier, Coach Travis McDonnell, Coach Ted Bloom Middle Row (L-R) Will Todd, Chris Gaulin, Fed Ruggiero, Bryan Sy, James Lee, Jimi Demi-Ajayi, Mac Gallagher, Mattock Callahan, Gore Kamara Front Row (L-R) Maz Obuz, Andrew Wofford, Eric Loreaux, Carter Burch, Julius Mouser, Manager Milena Lurie, Matt Gagnier, Manager Sara Adler

The resounding victory capped a 16-3 season for Shipley, which also had the highlight of defeating Episcopal Academy of the powerful Inter-Ac League in the first round of the Inter-Ac Invitational a week earlier.

This year’s Shipley squad featured a standout Division I signee in senior midfielder Julius Mouser, a Rutgers recruit who finished the year with a school-record 69 goals and 32 assists and set school career marks in goals (200), assists (101) and points ( 301).

But the Gators had much more to go with Mouser. Senior midfielder and second-year captain Gore Kamara said the team’s camaraderie played a big role in its success.

“I think players have been together for a good number of years,” he said. “Our entire offense came back. Defensively, we lost three starting players. “But at our Spring Break trip to Hilton Head in South Carolina, we stayed in a house, and we bonded for a week and that helped us to become friends.”

The title-game win over ANC was most impressive since Shipley won the regular season battle by a much closer score (8-5).

“We had beaten them, 8-5, but we really wanted to focus on playing our game and not playing to the hype,” Kamara said. “We just stayed calm and focused, and played our game.”

Mike Litner had five goals and four assists and Mouser added three goals and two assists to lead the attack. Mattock Callahan scored three goals while Andrew Wofford scored twice and Mac Gallagher had a goal and four assists. Mike Gagner added a goal and two assists.

Kamara led the defense with seven groundballs and Ian McGibbon made five saves to gain the victory in goal.

Standout defense also was supplied by Evan Romano, Eric Loreaux, Steve Gentry, Will Todd, Jamie Piltch, Mike Gagnier, Luke Massengill, Maz Obuz, Jon Messerschmidt and Nick Piasecki as the Gators raced to a 6-0 first-period lead.

Litner also reached a milestone as he finished the season with 100 points (59 goals). Gallagher closed with 60 points (35 goals) and was a key at the face-off X along with Romano, Mouser and Piltch.

Also contributing to the title-game win were today were James Lee, Dan Gordon, Carter Burch, Ian Mercier, Brian Sy and Jimi Demi-ajayi.

Kamara said the win over EA was his biggest highlight aside from the championship. In that game, Shipley led most of the way and closed out a 9-7 triumph despite losing McGibbon in the first 8 seconds of the game with an injury after a save.

Sophomore goalie Chris Gaulin (16 saves) filled in brilliantly. Shipley then fell to second-seeded Malvern Prep, 19-4, in the second round, but came into the Friends Schools League tourney with added confidence.

“We weren’t expected to go anywhere, so we just took it one game at a time and came out with a great win,” Kamara said. “We used the Malvern game as a learning experience and came out of that focused.”

Shipley also had a 7-4 win this year over Plymouth Whitemarsh, which won the Suburban One American Conference crown with an undefeated mark and lost to District 1 semifinalist Pennsbury by just one goal in the first round of district play.

“The win over EA was most memorable because we gained some recognition,” said Kamara. “Playing in the Friends League, people think we’re not as competitive and this proved we can compete with teams from top leagues.”

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