By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 11/8/14
There is much debate over which club lacrosse team has the best 2018 squad in North America.
Big 4/Duke’s HHH believes it has the best team and more evidence of that came today after the host team edged Leading Edge (N.J.), 6-5, to win the 2018 crown at the Big 4 Fall Champions League at Penn Charter.
HHH rallied from an early 2-0 deficit and later a 4-3 deficit by scoring three straight goals to start the second half. Matthew Clibanoff (La Salle) had two goals to spark the offense while Patrick Drake (Salesianum School) also scored a key goal in the second half surge.
Gavin Tygh (Penn Charter) was a standout at the face-off X and Mike Clibanoff (La Salle) and Scott MacMillan handled the goaltending chores.
“I think our offense started to click more in the second half,” Tygh said.
“I just think we huddled up as a grpup and said ‘We’re a lot better and let’s prove it,'” added Matthew Clibanoff. “I think we are the top team and we’ve played two tournaments with other top teams and we’ve won both.”
Big 4/Duke’s HHH placed second in the US Lacrosse U15 national Championship this summer, bowing to 3d Select National in the finals. Triple-H, which is the middle school feeder team to the powerful Duke’s L.C. in Philly, has one more tourney this fall – next week at the FLG IN 3d Fall Shootout at Mount Saint Mary’s University.
Leading Edge seized a 2-0 lead on consecutive goals by Griffin Westlin (Seton Hall Prep). Luke Summers (Allentown Central Catholic) and Brett Hobbs (Salesianum) then scored for HHH tie it, but Westlin fed George Enman (Pingry School) for a 3-2 lead. Matthew Hilburn (Malvern Prep) tied it before Nick Bond (Westfield) put Leading Edge up before halftime.
“Gavin did a great job getting us possessions and the goalies, Scotty and Mike, did really well,” said idfielder Grayson Sallade (Manheim Township). “The offense started slow and then we picked it up.
“It was a great tournament and I wanted to give a shoutout to coach (Billy) McKinney. There were a lot of (college) coaches and great exposure.”