Boys lacrosse: Somers ends St. Joseph's title reign
Christian Paley poured in eight goals to power top-seeded Somers to a 14-8 victory over St. Joseph in the Class S state final at Jack Casagrande Field in Norwalk on Saturday afternoon.
It was the fourth state lacrosse title for Somers (18-2), as the Spartans denied the Cadets their third straight Class S crown. Somers is also the first non-FCIAC team to win a state boys lacrosse title since 2013.
"They are the number-one seed for a reason," St. Joseph High head coach Brendan Talbot said. "We knew that coming in here. We tried to get after it. The best team won tonight."
Paley, a junior attacker, led the charge with his eight markers — including five consecutive third-quarter goals when the Spartans built up a 13-4 advantage. Michael Munson and Dante Giachello added three goals apiece.
Goalkeeper Chris Allen made five saves.
Jared Newall had four goals to pace St. Joseph, the No. 18 seed. Chris Klabonski chipped in with two goals and Nick Celentano and Ryan Wilson had one each. Goalie Cillian Donahue notched 11 saves.
"I think we played pretty well offensively and defensively," Talbot said. "Between the boxes, getting the groundballs, it's not just our guys not getting it, it's the white team (Somers) going after it and getting it. Credit to them and their effort. They went out and won the game."
Goals from Klabonski and Newall staked St. Joseph (12-10) to a 2-0 lead at the 5:38 mark of the first quarter, before Paley netted his first. Celentano's strike at 3:02 made it 3-1 and Giachello pulled one back from the Spartans at 1:33 to cut the Cadet lead to 3-2 after one.
The second quarter was all Somers, as it outscored St. Joseph 4-1 to take the lead for good. Halftime failed to cool off the Spartans, as Giachello and Munson hit the twine to make it 8-4 with 9:14 left in the stanza. That's when Paley went on his five-goal uprising, making it 13-4 after three.
St. Joseph regained its footing in the fourth quarter, with Newall scoring twice and Klabonski once to make it 13-7. That was as close as the Cadets got, as the teams traded goals over the final 3:32 to provide the final scoreline.
"They beat us to all the loose balls," Talbot said. "If you're not winning faceoffs and you're going to get outworked, that's a tough way to try to win a game."