Boys’ Lax Routs Portsmouth Abbey, Wins Fourth Straight
Boys' varsity lacrosse beat Portsmouth Abbey in a blowout away game on Saturday in what many consider to be their best display of talent and teamwork so far this season. The final score was 19-4, bringing Big Red’s record to 5-3 on the season. With this rout, Exeter extended their winning streak to four games.
Exeter soon established their dominance on the field with an energetic start. For almost the entire quarter, Exeter dictated play and maintained possession of the ball, with several excellent plays from senior co-captain Nick Weigel, senior Dan Mini and lower Michael Lackey on attack, all of whom hit the back of the net more than twice over the course of the game. At the end of the first quarter, the score was 8-0, Exeter.
“We moved the ball and capitalized on every opportunity we were given,” lower Thomas Stockham said. Senior captain Matt Ryan agreed, calling Exeter’s ball movement “fantastic.”
The second quarter began similarly, and Exeter again showed a consistently strong control of the ball. In the few opportunities they did get, Portsmouth pushed for goals, but senior Colin Delea rose to the challenge, making several excellent saves to deny his opponents. At the end of the half the score was 14-0, Exeter in the lead and Portsmouth still shut out.
When halftime ended, Exeter jumped back out onto the field, ready to batter Portsmouth’s cage with a few more shots. Delea was rewarded for his first half shutout, earning a break in the second half. Stockham relieved Delea in the net for the fourth straight game in a series of Exeter romps. Portsmouth Abbey refused to roll over, however, and they came back to play a stronger second half.
“Portsmouth stuck with it,” Stockham said. “They were a very disciplined and well-coached team.” Portsmouth's determined attitude and good coaching showed through, and they scored their first goal of the game, ending the shutout. Exeter soon reasserted their dominance, however, whipping in another four goals. The score at the end of the third was 18-1, with Exeter cruising to the win.
After the third, Big Red subbed out the entire first attack and defense in order to give the second line some playing time. Portsmouth Abbey had a surge of energy and scored 3 unanswered goals. Exeter scored only one goal in the fourth, though the second line maintained a strong defense and an aggressive offense.
The final score of the game was 19-4, as Exeter triumphed over Portsmouth Abbey for the third year in a row. Among those who scored were seniors Max Heald and Andrew Perkins and prep Nick McCall with two goals each, as well as upper Nick duPont and senior Kyle Robinson, who each scored one.
“We had the best game of our season on Saturday,” Stockham said. “We played an amazing game against a good team.” Stockham had nine saves during his time in the net. Another notable underclassman was lower Winston Smith, whose excellent work on face offs contributed to much of Exeter’s dominance. Out of the 15 faceoffs he played, Smith won 10, and teammates pointed him out as a leader on the field.
“Winston dominated the faceoffs, creating fast breaks,” Stockham said.
Both underclassmen, Stockham and Smith, garnered praise from their captain, Ryan, who mentioned Stockham as an important rising player and pointed out Smith’s strong game, keeping up with his consistently high level of play.
Game balls were awarded to seniors Christian Ayscue and Nick Weigel. Ayscue was a leader on defense, and Weigel recorded five points with two goals and three assists and has been a crucial cog in the offensive line throughout his four years on the team.
Next Friday, Exeter will play Governors Academy at home in one of their biggest games of the year. The boys are fired up, raring to avenge their disappointing 1-8 loss last season.