Division 2 Central/West boys lacrosse: Northampton fights to the fourth in 1st round loss to Tantasqua

By ADAM HARGRAVES

@Hargraves24

Published: 05-31-2017 9:28 PM

FISKDALE — The fight was there for the Northampton boys lacrosse team.

On two separate occasions, the Blue Devils faced a three-goal deficit in their first round game of the Division 2 Central/West tournament against Tantasqua on Wednesday.

Three straight goals by the Blue Devils tied the game at 6 going into the fourth, but the rally ended there.

Northampton lost 9-6.

The fifth-seeded Warriors extinguished any offensive momentum the No. 12 Blue Devils (12-7) had by possessing the ball for nearly the entire period.

“We came into the fourth, and they were just patient,” Northampton coach Matt Striebel said. “They are disciplined. We must have played defense for seven minutes. I don't know how long that stretch was.”

With several injuries to key players, the Blue Devils had to use some inexperienced players at certain positions.

“We had enough practice time,” Striebel said. “We had freshman who were playing J.V. in the game, and they played spectacular.”

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The Blue Devils had a resurgence in 2017, starting the season 9-1, but a rash of injuries to Henry Attias, Jared Fowler and Griffin Shaw derailed their full potential.

“When you lose two captains and a top senior defenseman, it was tough to recover from,” Striebel said. “Walking off the field today, there was nothing to be but proud.”

Sam Ohotnicky, a four year starter and defenseman played his last game as a Blue Devil.

“This season was more than I could ever possibly ask for,” Ohotnicky said. “The group of guys that played were the best group of guys that I could ever ask to play with. They were fantastic. Everyone stepped into roles.”

The Blue Devils improved every year that Ohotnicky played for Northampton.

“As the years went by we got more and more experience,” Ohotnicky said. “It was able to get us to this moment where we could play in the playoffs. Seeing everyone progress was just awesome.”

Down 6-3 late in the third period, the Blue Devils got back into the game when Alex Sylvester fought for possession of a rebound and found the net.

Tyler Allcroft’s rocket made it 6-5 before Jameson Miller tied the game at six with under a minute to play in third period.

Ben Beaudry scored less than two minutes into the fourth, as the Warriors quickly regained the lead. Anthony Law then scored for Tantasqua to make it 8-6 with 4 minutes, 7 seconds left in the game.

It was the final game for Northampton seniors Ryan Bredin, Theodore Ross, Jasper Kesin as well as Shaw, Fowler and Ohotnicky.

The Blue Devils return a dynamic scorer in Allcroft next season. Against the Warriors, Allcroft had two goals and two assists. In his junior season, Allcroft had 47 goals and 15 assists after only scoring six points his entire sophomore season.

Ryan Heng, who didn’t play in Northampton’s season opening loss to Tantasqua, made 11 saves in net.

Miller opened the scoring for Northampton in the first period. After Allcroft drew a double, the pass went to Miller who found the net to make it 2-1 in the first period.

Allcroft’s second goal came in the second period when he sent an unassisted shot, from 20 yards out, trickling past the feet of Tantasqua goalie Cole Amadio to make it 4-2.

Later in the second period, Evan Moulton’s (two assists) pass from behind the net found Ray Higgins II who made it 4-3.

Beaudry had three goals and two assists for the Warriors while Tom Muir, Mike Frio and Law each scored twice.

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