As the month of March wrapped up, the Bishop Moore men’s lacrosse team (11-4) entered a tough final stretch of the regular season. On the final Friday of the month, the Hornets welcomed one of the top teams from the state of Maryland, DeMatha High School. Tuesday April 2nd, the Hornets wrapped up conference play as they hosted Windermere Prep. Friday April 5th, they faced a tough road test at Ponte Vedra High School, one of Florida’s flagship lacrosse programs.
The Hornets enter the final week of the regular season before hosting the district tournament Tuesday, April 16th. They’ll enter the tournament as the top seed and will face Dr. Phillips. The Hornets defeated the Panthers 14-3 on the road in early March. The winner will face either The First Academy or Edgewater on Thursday April 18th. The Hornets must win the district tournament for any hope of returning to the state playoffs.
Bishop Moore 14, DeMatha High School, 9
DeMatha High School showed why the state of Maryland is one of the premiere lacrosse areas in the country. In a physical, low-scoring first half, the Hornets scored just four goals and trailed 5-4. They hadn’t trailed at halftime since losing to Oxbridge Academy in February. After a 3-3 draw in the third period, the Stags entered the fourth period clinging to an 8-7 advantage. An illegal stick penalty on the Hornets gave the Stags a one-man advantage for the first three minutes of the fourth period.
“Those things happen. It’s all in how you respond to them. We were able to only give up one goal (in that span) and I think that helped us down the stretch.” Coach Reed Reynolds said when asked about his initial reaction to the penalty.
Once back to full strength, it was that Hornet juniors RJ Sanfilippo and Brooks Rask that led the comeback. The duo combined to score or assist on four of seven fourth period goals to secure a 14-9 victory. Junior midfielder, Justin Mulligan, added one goal and one assist in the fourth period and extended the Hornets winning streak to eight games.
Bishop Moore 20, Windermere Prep 1
After scoring the game’s opening goal, Windermere Prep surrendered twenty unanswered goals by twelve different Hornets – extending the winning streak to nine games. The Hornets RJ Sanfilippo, Justin Mulligan and Justin Pridgen each provided three goals. It was the third time this season the team had three or more hat tricks in a single game. Eight Hornets were credited with assists on the night.
The win secured a perfect 6-0 in-conference record and secured the top seed in the upcoming district tournament.
Bishop Moore 8, Ponte Vedra 10
The Hornets nine game winning streak came to an end at the hands of Florida’s top-ranked team, the Ponte Vedra Sharks (14-1). The tough road test will certainly be used as a lesson as the state playoffs loom just weeks away.
After burying themselves into a 4-0 hole after the first period, the Hornets comeback fell just short, outscoring the Sharks 2-0 in the final period. Brooks Rask lead the scoring with two goals and added one assist. The assist allowed Rask to regain the team lead with 20. Senior midfielder, Brett Heneghen, extended his streak to 10 consecutive games with at least one assist.
The Hornets will close out the regular season this week with games at Lake Highland Prep (10-6) Wednesday and a visit from Cardinal Mooney (15-1), ranked 4th in the state, on Friday.
Central Florida Lifestyle Sports will be following Bishop Moore men’s lacrosse all throughout the 2019 season. If you have a story or would like in-depth coverage of your Central Florida high school sporting event, please contact Nick Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo credit: Dawn Kiefer