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SIlive= Stepinac wins championship

Posted Saturday, May 25, 2013 by SI Live

Monsignor Farrell


5/24/20135:15 p.m.

Archbishop Stepinac


Gaelic Park, Bronx, NY



Archbishop Stepinac scores early and often to beat Monsignor Farrell for CHSAA NYC A division lacrosse championship

May 24, 2013 10 p.m.

Paul Pizzo scored two of Monsignor Farrell's four goals in the CHSAA NYC A division lacrosse championship game. -(Staten Island Advance file photo by Anthony DePrimo)

For Monsignor Farrell to capture its second straight CHSAA NYC A division lacrosse championship, a fast start was probably going to be a requirement.

The problem was that Archbishop Stepinac was the team in high gear early, connecting for eight goals in the opening 9:13 of the contest and rolling on to a 16-4 victory in Friday's title game at Gaelic Park in the Bronx.

"Yeah, we kind of blinked and all of a sudden the game was out of hand a little bit. They're a very experienced team. They had 17 seniors on the team," said Farrell head coach Steve Lyman. "We brought up a lot of guys and we're returning a lot of guys, but (Stepinac's) experience really showed. Plus they were able to overcome any mistakes they made where we made some inexperienced mistakes today."

The contest — played on a windy, chilly and dreary day that featured occasional rain — was a rematch of last year's title game which Farrell won 9-8 with a tiebreaking goal with 36 seconds left.

This time around, there wasn't much suspense.

Andrew Murray scored just 10 seconds into the game and Dom Vallario followed 58 seconds later to make it 2-0.

"We went in with a game plan to stop No. 7 (Murray) — their big middie — and 10 seconds into the game, he scores a goal. And that really set the tone for them," said Lyman. "Afterwards we did a good job on him. He only scored two goals in the game. But their other playmakers made plays."


Indeed, Vallario netted three goals and Murray, Tommy Keane, Mike Teelan, Chrystian Lopez and Danny Sullivan added one apiece for an 8-0 advantage after the first quarter. With the exception of junior Keane, the other five scorers from that spurt are seniors.

Keane opened the second quarter with a goal before the second-seeded Lions ended the shutout on Jack Beale's goal with 4:10 remaining before halftime. Spencer O'Toole came right back with a goal for the White Plains, N.Y., squad — which notched a 20-3 win over Farrell during the regular season — but Kevin Buono scored with 22 ticks before intermission to make it 10-2.

Farrell's Paul Pizzo opened the second-half scoring, but any hope of carrying that momentum was quickly extinguished by Stepinac. The Crusaders, who outscored opponents 47-10 in their three playoff victories, tallied the next five goals — two more each from Vallario and O'Toole and one from Murray.

"They just had big, tall guys who could really extend out very far. We had a lot of trouble with that," said Lyman about Stepinac's defensive prowess. "They were extending us from sideline to sideline all the way up to the 50 and we had some trouble with that. That was huge on that side of the ball."

Lopez tacked on another goal 45 seconds into the fourth quarter and Pizzo netted the game's final goal midway through the stanza.

"It's tough to come back from an 8-0 deficit, but the kids didn't give up. They kept fighting. Spotting a first-place team eight goals is real tough to come back from," said Lyman.

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