By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 4/14/12
Senior defenseman Connor Bailey said it’s easy for Haverford School to get motivated to compete in their Checking for Cancer Lacrosse Invitational.
“We` always come out strong for Checking for Cancer,” said Bailey after his Fords handled Lawrenceville School, 10-3, today in one of the feature games of the season’s top boys’ tournament. “It means a lot to us for our coach and this program.”
The Checking for Cancer tourney, which drew thousands of spectators eager to see many of the top teams in the country, was created by Haverford School coach John Nostrant (survivor of prostate cancer) and Georgetown Prep coach Kevin Giblin (survivor of colon cancer). The two former Washington College linemates wanted to create awareness for early detection of those two men’s cancers and testicular cancer, as well as cancers that can be prevented through education.
The Nike-sponsored event has become the most-talked-about boys’ tourney of trhe year – just before the Haverford-Lawrenceville game Long Island’s Garden City toppled No. 1 Conestoga, 12-11, in a brilliant game.
Haverford School, meanwhile, has been staking its claim as a top team. The Fords (10-1, ranked No. 4 by MaxPreps.com) have won seven in a row since a one-goal loss to Landon knocked them out of the No. 1 position in the polls.
They have overcome many injuries to key people; today they were without their ace face-off specialist, Will Gural, who went home with a bad stomach virus. In his place, standout senior middies Will McNamara, and Sam Rohr held their own at the X and Henry Blynn led the attack with five goals while Gavin McBride had two goals and an assist.
Bailey said Nostrant’s lead sets the tone for the team’s performance at Checking for Cancer and beyond.
“We see how much heart and time he puts into this team we have to equal his intensity,” said Bailey. “We always bring our best game. It means a lot to him; and it means a lot to us. He looks out for us, so we look out for him.”
Haverford School held the Big Red (6-1, ranked No. 12 by MaxPreps.com) scoreless until four minutes pass in the second half. Jake Landman made eight saves in goal for the Fords.
“The defense played really well and Jake had a big game with a lot of saves,” Bailey said. “Seeing middies that never face off going out there and doing so well was big. Everyone stepped up today.”
Matt O’Connor led Lawrenceville by posting 19 saves in goal.
Haverford 10, Lawrenceville 3
Haverford School 2-2-1-5- 10
Lawrenceville 0-0-2-1- 3
Gavin McBride 2g, 1a
Reilly Hupfeldt 1g, 1a
Henry Blynn 5g
Will McNamara 1g, 1a
Timmy Brooks 1g
Zach Rego 1a
Jeff Odiorne 1a
Face off: N/A
Jake Landman 8 saves,
Tyler Miller 1 save
Mark Leonhard 1g
Steffan Gratch 2a
John Salemi 1g
Josh Stauffer 1g
Matt O’Connor 19 saves