By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 6/19/16
Keenan Alward picked up a groundball at the goal crease and scored with one second left today to lift Brotherhood Lacrosse (N.J.) to a 6-5 win over Gaffer Elite (N.Y.) in the 2017 championship game at the Victory Events Boys Summer Slam at Westtown School.
The exciting finish gave Brotherhood a sweep of the STX Play Huge Prize Pack titles. Just minutes earlier, Brotherhood scored six unanswered goals in the second half and toppled Team Turnlink, 9-5, to take the 2020A title. Both crowns earned Brotherhood the $2,500 gear credit from STX.
Alwood, an uncommitted attackman from Northern Highlands, had three goals and helped Brotherhood to a 4-1 halftime lead. But Gaffer rallied for four straight goals to seize a 5-4 lead until Robert Sciubba (Ramsey High) tied it with three minutes to play. Kyle Renz (Nanuet, N.Y.) made a key stop for Brotherhood to preserve the tie before Alward tallied the game-winner.
“They (Gaffer) had a lot of energy in the second half,” said Alward. “I thought we were going OT, but after a clear we had a turnover and Kyle Renz made a big stop.
“They got the ball back and our middies were double teaming so I went in for the triple team and the ball fell on the ground and I just put it in.”
Brotherhood 2017 also won the Albany Summer Class (United Lacrosse) last week, but Alward did not play. “I thought today our team defense was great and the poles put their sticks on the attack’s hands and stopped them from getting good shots,” Alward said. “I think that offensively we did well when we settled down and ran our plays.”
Tom Fay (Nanuet) added two goals for Brotherhood.
The Brotherhood 2020 team was trailing, 5-3, to Team Turnpike at halftime before exploding in the second half. Jack Stephen (Northern Highlands) led the attack with three goals and Lucas Poswey had a pair whole Jack Sparago, Connor Fox and Dom Delponte each scored once. Max Nolan and Rory Maurer handled the goaltending duties.
“We shared the ball a lot and the defense was sliding well and the goalies played really well,” said Stephen. “We had a lot of penalties int he first half and it caused us to slide a lot more so they got open shots.
“In the second half we just turned it on and started scoring goals.”
Bailey Lanzi led Team Turnpike with two goals and Alex Higgins had two goals.