The number six ranked HCHS Boys Lacrosse Team marched into Naperville Saturday morning for an IHSLA top ten matchup against number five ranked and undefeated Neuqua Valley High School. Neuqua was looking to avenge an 11-10 overtime loss to the Devils last year and extend their state leading winning streak to twelve games. The Devils were out to prove they belong in the same dialogue with the top teams in the state.
The first half was a defensive struggle as both teams looked to find their footing. The Devils took a 2-1 lead into the second quarter, but struggled to possess the ball and entered halftime behind a goal, 3-2.
Coach Mares focused his troops during halftime and the Red Devils came out red hot from the break. Setting the pace for the second half barrage was senior face off specialist Jake Simon. Simon won 75% of his faceoffs on the day and was dominate in the critical third quarter. Junior Peter Madden and senior Colin Parker did the damage on the offensive end for the Devils. Madden scored four goals on five shots on the day, while Parker added four points on two goals and two assists, leading the Devils to a 7-5 lead after three quarters.
The team turned the game over to the defense and junior goal keeper John Thompson for the fourth quarter. Defenders John Kwasigroch, Joe Kwasigroch and Jack Cain, along with LSM Robbie Kress and SSMD Parker Bailey put the clamps on the high scoring Wildcats offense, shutting them out in the final stanza. The Devils added two early fourth quarter goals to take a 9-5 lead and then the scrum was on. The Devils kept their cool and held strong as the Wildcats threw everything they had in the final minutes of the game to no avail.
The Devils have a busy week ahead, with Lincoln Way visiting Dickinson Field on Tuesday night, a trip to OPRF on Thursday and a Saturday matinee at home against Fenwick. Sitting at 9-2 and ranked #6 in the state, the Red Devils are just hitting their stride as they continue their school record breaking pace.
The Red Devils Boys Lacrosse team went on a 4-0 run over an 8 day period from April 17th to April 25th. Central kicked off the four game stretch with an 8-5 victory at St. Charles North. Junior Jack Crews led the way with 3 goals against the North Stars and senior Peter Madden added a goal and two assists for 3 points.
Two nights later the Devils headed to St. Laurence High School and scored a season high 16 goals while limiting the Vikings to a single goal. The Red Devils then returned to the friendly confines of Dickinson Field for their first weekend game of the year on April 22nd. Seniors Colin Parker and Peter Madden had four points each will juniors Jack Crews and Jack Nastas each added 2 goals as the boys laxers posted a 12-4 victory over Wheaton North.
Fremd visited Hinsdale Central on the evening of April 25th. HCHS posted a 14-5 victory which propelled them to a number 6 ranking in the state of Illinois. The Red Devils now sit at 8-2 with a top ten battle against number 5 ranked Neuqua Valley High School in their next contest on Saturday, April 29th. Be sure to get out and support your Devil Laxers for the 10:00am face off against Neuqua!
Thursday night’s conference clash between rivals Hinsdale Central and York lived up to the billing. Both teams entered the game 4-1 with HCHS ranked 7th and York ranked 12th in the IHSLA computer rankings. The first half was a game of jitters as both teams struggled to get quality shots and find their footing. The Devils took a 2-1 lead into the locker room after the defensive focused opening 24 minutes.
A pumped up York team dominated in the first four minutes of the third quarter. They raced out to a 5-2 lead with 4 goals in 4 minutes as the Devils had problems possessing the ball and seemed shell shocked as the Dukes swarmed the goal. Coach Mares settled the Devils with a quick time out and seniors Peter Marcus and Joe Kwasigroch woke up the sleeping Devils with big goals in the back half of the third quarter as the Devils came charging back.
The Devils tied the game early in the 4th quarter with a 12 yard rocket from Mark Ferrino and then took the lead on a driving unassisted goal from Jack Nastas. York didn’t roll over as they scored two goals in a four minute stretch to take a 7-6 lead with under five minutes to play. Seniors Jake Simon and Mark Ferrino then hooked up on a nice little give and go to tie the game with a little over two minutes left. Both teams had opportunities to end it in regulation, but the defenses put the clamps on and the game headed to overtime tied 7-7.
The overtime was marred by two bizarre officiating calls, one in which the game was stopped for almost five minutes as the three officials tried to determine if the Dukes had seven on the offensive end after a flag had been thrown for off-sides. The flag was picked up and York was awarded possession. The Dukes then scored on a second chance shot following a ricochet off the pipe to end the game with an 8-7 victory.
The Devils beat themselves, committing 17 turnovers in a high intensity match up in which they seemed a step behind for the first two and a half quarters. They ramped up the intensity and played smart, focused lacrosse the last quarter and a half, but as they found out, you have to play 48 minutes to beat a quality squad like York. If the Devils can play entire games with the effort they gave the final 18 minutes against York they may just be playing come June.
The Devils have a busy week ahead of them. Monday night they travel to St. Charles North for a 6pm game, meet St. Laurence on their campus Wednesday night at 6:45pm and end the three game stretch by hosting Wheaton North at Dickinson on Saturday at 1pm.