By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 1/3/09
Philadelphia boys’ travel teams continued to flex their muscles in 2008.
During the summer, the Duke’s Lacrosse Club won its third straight Camp National Championship at Johns Hopkins by whipping the New Hampshire Tomahawks, 10-1. The Duke’s reached the finals by toppling Tri-State Black, 8-7, and also had a key 7-6 overtime win over another local team, Team HEADstrong, in the playoffs.
Team HEADstrong, meanwhile, had a great showing at the Dick’s Sporting Goods Tournament of Champions in Tampa last January, bowing in the finals to a team fromBritish Columbia.
Back to the summer, Mesa Fresh went 11-0 to win the Battle of the Hotbeds Lacrosse Camp at the University of Delaware. Mesa Fresh emerged from a field of 46 teams to finish 8-0 in pool play and then won three games in one day to take the crown.
Included in the playoffs was a dramatic 5-4 victory over New England Developmental (NED) in an extra “play-in” game.
Also in the summer, the Black team from the Arrowhead Lacrosse Club went 6-0 and won three overtime games to win the Blue Division championship at the Rutgers MVP Lacrosse Tournament. Arrowhead Black defeated teams from Long Island, New Jersey and Massachusetts. A combination of solid defense and clutch scoring from many of the offensive players helped earn the team victory.
There was more success in the summer. The Archies Lacrosse Club won the Red Division championship last weekend at the Rutgers MVP Tournament. The Archies went 7-0 and won its division with a 6-5 decision over the Roughriders of Maryland.
Also, Malvern Prep won an early summer championship at Rutgers while LB3, and Rebel Elite had strong showings. Many of these teams qualified for this weekend’s 2009 Dick’s Sporting Goods National Championship Tournament in Wesley Chapel Park in Tampa.
The success of these boys’ teams is an offshoot of a huge expansion in club and travel teams for both boys’ and girls’ in the Philadelphia area. On the girls’ side, the number of travel teams nearly doubled this year.