By Bradley Schlegel
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/22/15
Mike Gerzabek scored three goals, including the decisive tally early in the fourth quarter, to lead Springfield-Delco to a 7-5 victory over Conestoga Thursday for its first District 1 boys’ lacrosse championship at Henderson.
Lucas Spence scored twice for the fourth-seeded Cougars (17-4), who will open PIAA play Wednesday against District 3 third-place finisher Hershey.
James Spence recorded seven saves for Springfield-Delco, which rallied from a 5-4 deficit against its Central League opponent. Kyle Long added three assists.
Head coach Tom Lemieux said he planned on suspending his rule allowing team members to celebrate a victory for only 24 hours.
“I think I’m going to take two days to enjoy this,” Lemieux said. “This is a special win.”
Steven Hildebrand and Chris Brady each scored twice for the 10th seeded Pioneers (13-10), who scored four goals during a dominant third quarter.
Conestoga will meet Distyrict 4 champion Lewisburg in the first round of states on Wednesday.
After getting shut out in the third quarter, Dan Wasson’s goal 48 seconds into the fourth quarter, off a pass from Long, forced a 5-5 tie.
Gerzabek struck 29 seconds later. The junior attacker took a feed from Long in the left slot and beat Conestoga goalkeeper John Roulston (six saves) to put the Cougars ahead for good.
“Lucas Spence pushed up, which left me wide open,” Gerzabek said. “The coaches always talk about doing the right thing and playing the right way, which is what I did on that play.”
Conestoga’s best fourth-quarter scoring opportunity came with approximately 3:30 remaining on a shot on goal from the right wing by senior midfielder Sam Friedman.
But a save by James Spence led to an insurance goal by Lucas Spence with 1:14 remaining.
A patient offense and the performance of Springfield-Delco senior Zac Dworkin (11 of 16) at the face-off X helped limit the Pioneers’ possessions in the fourth quarter.
“They made it very hard for us to get the ball back,” Conestoga senior midfielder Chris Brady said.
Springfield-Delco’s only other appearance in the District 1 finals occurred in 2010 when it fell to Conestoga, 8-4. The Pioneers won the title from 2009-12.
Conestoga 1 0 4 0 — 5
Springfield-Delco 2 2 0 3 — 7
Steven Hildebrand 2g
Chris Brady 2g
Tommy Sopko 1g
Sam Friedman 1a
Henry Berg 1a
John Roulston 6 saves
Mike Gerzabeck 3g, 1a
Lucas Spence 2g
Dan Wasson 1g, 1a
Zac Methlie 1g
Kyle Long 3a
James Spence 7 saves