Boys Home Lacrosse Opener Highlights Determination

Goalie Christopher McPartland (2) keeps a watchful eye on teammate Patrick Farrell (11) as Whitman clears the ball.
Goalie Christopher McPartland (2) keeps a watchful eye on teammate Patrick Farrell (11) as Whitman clears the ball.
Midfielder Mitchell Bermudez fires one past the Bay Shore goalie.
Midfielder Mitchell Bermudez fires one past the Bay Shore goalie.
Jaron Batts winds up for a shot after winning a faceoff.
Jaron Batts winds up for a shot after winning a faceoff.
Long Pole specialist Alex Keane (26) had a strong day keeping Bay Shore's top Midfielder in check.
Long Pole specialist Alex Keane (26) had a strong day keeping Bay Shore's top Midfielder in check.
Mitchell Bermudez (22) gets a shot off that found the back of the net.
Mitchell Bermudez (22) gets a shot off that found the back of the net.
Senior Thomas Chimenti, working behind the cage, had 3 goals on the day.
Senior Thomas Chimenti, working behind the cage, had 3 goals on the day.

The cold rain stung, but it did little to dampen the spirits and resolve of Whitman’s boys varsity lacrosse team in their Division I opener against Bay Shore. Starting off slowly, the Wildcats fell behind 4-1 at the end of the first period, and were down 10-4 at the end of the half. “We had numerous opportunities where we hit their goalie point blank but could not finish,” said Varsity Coach Bob Howell. The Wildcats regrouped during halftime, and the toughness and determination that may well be the trademark of this year’s team took over. “I told the guys at half time, with the arsenal we have on attack, there is no reason that we can't get back into this ball game,” said Coach Howell.

Within minutes the Wildcats won five faceoff’s, behind midfielders Ian Zakow and Jaron Batts, and scored quickly on each possession. “I spoke with Ian and Jaron to come up with a counter to what Bay Shore was doing and we won a lot of face-offs in the second half.”  Said Coach Howell. Whitman took possession on 3 additional occasions behind strong defensive play from Chris McPartland in the goal and defenseman Patrick Farrell, Alex Remstein, and Sean Milanese all contributing to minimizing the Bay Shore Attack. Long Pole Midfielders Alex Keane and Sam Esposito were instrumental in helping the Wildcats maintain possession, creating additional opportunities for scoring.

The Whitman team fought its way back, tying the game 12-12, and then ending the third period down 13-12. But Bay Shore was not giving up easily, taking control of several face-offs and scoring on the fast breaks. Both teams matched up well for the fourth period, with the Wildcats scoring twice to bring it close, but Bay Shore took advantage of an open net, and the final minute ticked away.

“I’m proud of the kids because they didn’t quit," said Coach Howell. "They played hard to the very end. We had the momentum on our side. But then because of a couple of unfortunate mistakes on our part, the momentum was lost.”  The final score had Bay Shore ahead 17-14.  Scoring for the Wildcats- Mitchell Bermudez, 4 goals; Thomas Chimenti 3 goals; Vincent Colapinto 3 goals/5 assists; Ian Zakow 2 goals/1 assist; Liam Brennan, 2 goals/1 assist; and Ryan Muhlstock 1 assist. The Whitman team will be working hard this week getting ready for a non-league home game on Saturday against Minisink Valley. Game time is 12Noon.