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    Friday, May 24, 2024

    H.S. boys’ lacrosse preview capsules

    Waterford´s Jackson Huta (1) shoots against Fitch goalie Evan Hicks during an ECC game last season. Both players return this season. (Dana Jensen/The Day)
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    Following are the 2023 H.S. boys’ lacrosse preview capsules:

    ECC DIVISION I

    East Lyme

    Head coach: Gary Wight (20th season)

    Key returnees: Jr. A Drew Sager, Sr. A Sawyer Tighe, Jr. A Jack Campbell, Sr. M Jack Keating, Jr. M Niall Green, Jr. M Aiden Patterson, Sr. M Matt Brodeur, Sr. M Eric Johnson, Sr. M Thabian Riley, So. M Jake Correia, Sr. D Leo Goetz, Sr. D Colin Bunkley, Jr. D Spencer Kennedy, Sr. D Ben Kelley, Jr. D Campbell Posgay, Sr. G Spencer Sherman.

    Top newcomers: Sr. A Reagan Pierce, Jr. M Juan Morales, So. M Gavin White, So. M Syrun Sistare, Sr. M Will Potopowitz IV, Jr. D Carter Summers, Sr. D Nicholas Maksim, Sr. D Connor Moran, So. D Jonathan Harms, Sr. D Scott Quell, Jr. G Caleb Haylon, So. G John Whewell.

    Outlook: The Vikings went 11-5 last season and earned spots in the ECC and Class M state tournaments. White begins his 20th season with two experienced players in the attack (Sager and Tighe) and plenty of experience in the midfield and on defense. East Lyme should remain one of the elite programs in the ECC and challenge for division and postseason titles.

    Fitch

    Head coach: David Sabilia (7th season)

    Key returnees: Jr. M Boden Frost, Jr. A Tate Gordon, Jr. M Eli Walters, Sr. G Evan Hicks, Sr. A Evan Salen, Sr. D Luke Lambert, Sr. M Morgan Reissnar, Sr. M Gavin Casagrande.

    Top newcomers: Jr. G Chase Beyus, Jr. D Tommy Frasier, So. A Roman Rich, Jr. M Ben Perry, Jr. LSM Matt Deichler.

    Outlook: Shawn Beebe, an ECC all-star long stick midfielder, was among the graduation losses from a 9-6 team, but Sabilia expects the Falcons to improve this spring and remain competitive in a strong division.

    NFA

    Head coach: Mike Murphy (2nd season)

    Key returnees: Sr. A Anthony Ballestrini, Jr. M Logan Jenkins, Sr. M Tommy Brunelli, Jr. D Nick Winton, Sr. D Caleb Beetle.

    Top newcomers: Sr. LSM Jake Kenney, So. G Patrick Lawson, So. M Wyatt Woodcock, So. M Taegon Calouro, Jr. D-LSM Grady O'Dell, Fr. A Conor Dempsey, So. A Corlan Beetle, Jr. M C.J. Frank.

    Outlook: After going 9-7 during the regular season and winning a game in the Class L state tournament, Murphy expects more success this season with a nice mix of experience players and talented newcomers. “I look forward to the challenge of putting the pieces together to have another competitive season,” Murphy said.

    Waterford

    Head coach: Paul Deon (3rd season)

    Key returnees: Sr. A Trevor Stringer, Sr. A Jackson Huta, So. M C.J. Landry, Sr. M Aiden Bousquet, Sr. M Terrance Silva, Sr. G Dylan McCarty, Sr. D Josh Bertelli, Sr. D T.J. Bailey, Sr. D Dom Hedge, Jr. D Paul Deon, Jr. M Griffin Neal, Sr. D John Gomes.

    Top newcomers: So. D Miles Gada, So. M Rowan Gada, Sr. M Logan Peabody, Sr. M Matias Arcelus, Jr. M Xavier Del Gross, So. M Porter Watson, Sr. M Dylan Agsalud, So. M Cole Baumgartner, So. A Ethan Stelik, Fr. A Johan Deon, So. D Julian Secchiaroli.

    Outlook: The Lancers have some lofty goals this season after finishing 13-3 during the regular season, winning the ECC tournament championship and advancing to the Class S quarterfinals. With returning ECC all-stars Huta up front and Landry in the midfield, Deon’s goals are simple: compete for conference and state championships.

    Note: Division I includes Woodstock Academy.

    ECC DIVISION II

    Bacon Academy

    Head coach: Brian Martin (10th season)

    Key returnees: Sr. M Gavin Emmons, Sr. A Jack Holmes, So. A Ethan LoVetere, Jr. G Chase Goulet, Jr. D Brent Guntulis, So. D Zach Carroll, So. A Jameson Pirro.

    Top newcomers: Sr. M Ethan Foley, Jr. M Brady Gould, Jr. M Dante Colella, So. M Tanner Kundhal, Fr. M Brayden Ward, Fr. M Talan Ladyga.

    Outlook: The Bobcats are the reigning Division II champions and return three ECC all-stars in Emmons, Holmes and Goulet, so contending for another division title and making deep runs in the the ECC and Class S state tournament are realistic goals. “We have a lot of new players stepping into new roles,” Martin said. “Time will tell how good this team can be.”

    Ledyard/Griswold

    Head coach: Mark Chmielewski (3rd season)

    Key returnees: Sr. D Joshua Conn, Sr. D Dylan Freyer, Sr. A Tyler Kazlauskas, Sr. D-G Logan Rodrigues, Sr. M Liam Gervais, Sr. M Wyatt Crawford, Jr. M Sean Harren, Jr. D Matthew Tebbets, So. M Cortland Ruggiero, So. G Dylan Crawford.

    Top newcomers: So. M Brian Johnson, So. A Patrick Scully, So. A Eric Williams Jr., So. LSM-D Logan Storz, So. A Lucas Wanamaker, So. M Makai Moore.

    Outlook: The cooperative program went through a rebuilding season in 2022, so Chmielewski expects a more competitive team this spring. “We have a highly motivated group of individuals that are passionate about the game,” he said.

    Montville

    Head coach: Tatum Lakowsky (2nd season)

    Key returnees: So. G Darien Sherwood, Jr. A-M Jayden Sherwood, Jr. SSDM Luis Salas, So. M/A Christopher Baukus, Sr. A Ethan Johnson, Jr. A Jacob Watson, Sr. D-LSM Charles Taylor, Jr. D Jack Bubucis, Jr. FO Gavin DeLucia, Jr. SSDM Colin Wahl, Sr. D-LSM Will Klinefelter, Sr. D/LSM, Sr. D Tyler Ladia.

    Top newcomers: Jr. D Armani Patterson, So. A-M Anthony Cavaliere.

    Outlook: Lakowsky looks for improvement in her second season as Montville returns the bulk of its team, including Sherwood in goal and experience in front of him. “We have an opportunity to do well this season,” Lakowsky said.

    St. Bernard/Wheeler

    Head coach: David Howes (4th season)

    Key returnees: So. G Johannes Zachhuber, Jr. M Noah Courter, So. A Will Sluggett, So. A Benjamin Howes, So. M Mark Sauchuk, So. LSM Bode Brenek.

    Top newcomers: So. LSM-M Skyler Wilson, So. D Elic Lebron, Fr. D Maddox Roan, Fr. M Jimmy Niles.

    Outlook: The cooperative program graduated seven seniors from a year ago, so Howes has a young team with no seniors. He anticipates the Saints will start seven sophomores and two freshman and will lean on Courter, the team captain. Howes expects the Saints to be competitive in the division and improve during the season.

    Stonington

    Head coach: Conor Doyle (2nd season)

    Key returnees: Sr. A Cam Elenteny, Jr. A Nathan Mahoney, Jr. A Tyler Simao, Sr. M Ben Massengale, Sr. M Will French, Jr. M Ethan Mahoney, Sr. D Ben French, Sr. D Brady Mullen, Sr. LSM Jackson Hayes, Jr. G Andrew Whitman.

    Top newcomers: Sr. M Josiah Blackman, So. M Max Massengale, So. M Sam Hine, Fr. M Aiden Gillece, Fr. D Jack Goddard, Fr. G Jayse Zaharie, Fr. M Logan Christina.

    Outlook: The Bears return four ECC all-stars in Elenteny, Ben Massengale, Ben French and Hayes, giving Doyle a reason for optimism this spring. Stonington went 9-7 in 2022, then upset top-seeded East Lyme to reach the ECC tournament final. “We have a strong returning core that will allow us to be very competitive in the ECC and Class S this season,” Doyle said.

    OTHERS

    Norwich Tech/Windham Tech

    Head coach: Carrie Feldman (3rd season)

    Key returnees: So. D Zach Poore, So. M Joshua Lodyko, Jr. M Landon Traylor.

    Top newcomer: Fr. A Logan Ruszczyk.

    Outlook: The Warriors, who co-op with Windham Tech and play home games at Norwich Tech, are coming off an 8-8 season but suffering major graduation losses, especially at the attack. “We are a very young team with freshman and sophomores making up the majority of our numbers,” Feldman said. “Our goal this year is to play like we practice. We want to see connected passes, good movement, and solid defense.”

    Old Lyme

    Head coach: George Hudson (5th season)

    Key returnees: So. A Masson Bussman, Sr. D Ford Macadam, Sr. G Joe Montazella, Sr. A John Buckley, Jr. A-LSM Brodie Lippincott, Jr. M Macklin Cushman, Jr. M Jackson Bullock.

    Top newcomers: Fr. D Lucian Tracano, Fr. D Colman Curtiss Reardon, So. D Max Novak, Fr. M Ben Goulding.

    Outlook: The Wildcats went 8-8 a year ago but were competitive within an always strong Shoreline Conference. This Old Lyme team is young and has some holes to fill with inexperienced players, but Hudson is confident the Wildcats can qualify for the Shoreline tournament and have a “good showing” in the Class S state tourney.

    Williams School

    Head coach: Mark Fader (6th season)

    Key returnees: Sr. M Cody DeLaurentis, Sr. LSM-D Ben Xenelis, Sr. D Samuel Kaplan, Sr. M Amand Sarwar, Sr. D Andrew Zona, Sr. D Dan Genovese, Sr. M Brendon Marku, Jr. M Brendan Li, Jr. D Dylan Polidori, So. A Brian Li, So. D Robby Shay, So. G Henry Gallagher, So. A Marc Macera, Fr. M Henry Champagne.

    Top newcomers: Jr. A Tyler Gagliardi, So. A Finn McCann, Jr. M Thanasi Georgiadis, Jr. M Bryce Bennhoff, Sr. G Pearse Rothman, So. M Baker Katko.

    Outlook: The reigning Housatonic Valley Athletic League champions return the bulk of their lineup and look for a repeat. “Most of the seniors have been in the program since middle school and have the skills and game experience to overcome the loss of some outstanding players to graduation,” said Fader.

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