Categories: clam_chatter
      Date: Nov  8, 2011
     Title: BROWN & UMASS WRAP-UPS
The program's fall off to great start, going 16-3-2 on the weekend.

Here are the write-ups from this past weekend.

BROWN TOURNAMENT
TEAM FALLON (2014 A) (3-0) / TEAM O'BRIEN (2014 A) (3-0)

The Clams sent two 2014 A teams down to Brown on Saturday and both walked away with desicive 3-0 records.  The most gratifying part of the day was that both teams played the game the way we have been teaching it throughout the fall: dodging to create with solid off-ball movement and quick passing leading to open shots.  The defense came out wanting to make a statement and we did just that.  The defense did a great job putting getting the ball on the turf and then getting it up a starting the transition play that led to a majority of our goals.

Overall, this was a day of lacrosse where each of these players showed they can play this game the right way and re-enforced why we have them in our program.

-T.B. & E.O.

UMASS TOURNAMENT
SEASONED CLAMS (2-1)

As with most seasoned things, you only want so much and since these guys have had plenty written about them over the past 18 months, we decided to keep this short and sweet.

Suffices to say, we played well with a shortened bench walking away with a 2-1 record and enjoying each other's company for what (for some) is the last time we'll be together as a group.

Nice job, gentlemen!

2013 AA (3-0) UPPER CLASSMAN BLUE (3-0)
The Fighting Clams 2013 "AA" team appears to have picked up right where it left off at the end of this past summer, where it charged to the semi-finals of the UMBC Shootout before losing to the eventual Tournament Champion Calvert Hall, a team widely reputed to be one of the top teams in the country.

First off, we faced a solid Somers team, which I thought had a few very good players on it. The '13's were able to keep this team at bay for the duration of the contest, and double up on them in the end 8-4. Points were very evenly spread in this game; 6 different players tallied a point, and four (Dan Mini, 1G & 2A, Nick Desisto, 1G & 1A, Will Jennings, 1G & 1A & Kevin Murphy, 2G) notched two or more. The ground ball leader in this game was newcomer Nick Palandjian, who came up with 4 in the contest.

Next up we faced a team that has in the past had our number more often than we'd like, the always-tough NH Tomahawks. And, as always, they managed to keep things close and come up with their share of the GB's. Still, after knotting the game at four, midfielder Nick Desisto and the always-clutch Ben Katz came up with back to back goals to seal the win 6-4. The ground ball leader in this game was Tucker Mathers, who the book says had 3 but I'm pretty sure had more. And also deserving praise in this one were Giles Ober and James O'Leary, Giles for his point-blank saves, and James for - among other things - a huge pass interception on a would-have-been Tomahawks breakaway that resulted in James leading the break the other way. In my opinion, this was the play of this game, and a case could be made the day as a whole.

In our last game we locked horns with NESLL 2. A team that looked a little younger and less experience than some others we've seen, we walked away with a comfortable 11-2 win that saw pretty much everyone get involved in the scoring, including the always-exciting Matt Ryan, who notched a goal and a beautiful assist. The leading scorer in this game were Nick Desisto and Sam Tenney, who each posted 3 points.

On the whole, the day was undeniably a great start to our fall campaign. Before I going any further in reporting on points scored, I have to give a remarkable amount of the credit to our poles. With just 4 poles showing up in the AM, I must admit I was just a tad nervous before we got going. But Matt Ryan, Larken Kemp, Tucker Mathers & Eric Murphy dug deep, and somewhat remarkably - and certainly with the help of our goalies - held our opponents to only 10 goals on the day despite have basically no subs. Credit must also go to face-off man Elliott Burr, who according to our stats had 25 face-off wins vs. just 7 losses. When you're low on numbers on the defensive end, it helps to have a very good face-off man. And we had one! Indeed this is a testament to this unit, and of course aforementioned goaltenders O'Leary and Ober, who held things down impressively throughout the day.

The top scorer on the day was Nick Desisto, who piled up 5 goals and 2 assists. After Nick, four players notched 4 points apiece*; they were Sam Tenney (3G, 1A), Kevin Murphy (4G), Nick Weigel (2G, 2A) and Dan Mini (2G, 2A).

-J.W.

*these stats are according to our statisticians/goalies...as always, I'd be shocked if they got it all right; coming out of a game and picking up a pen, I sure wouldn't have

In our first game of the day we were matched up against the Blue’s from Eastern Mass. We got our day started off very well with this game winning handily by a score of 8-1. What I really liked about this game was how spread out the scoring was for the Blue & Orange. Geoff Ziobro led the charge with 2 assists. Almost everyone else on the offensive end chipped in a point. This included goals from Tucker Mscisz, Alec Brown, Austin Frank, Jeremy Connor, Alex Mirageas and Shane Hurley, as well as an assist from Jesse Samek. The offense looked sharp in this early morning game, swinging the ball around and finding the open man consistently.

Our next opponent put up more of a fight as we beat the Primetime Power Penguins 6-5. This charge was led by the attack unit of Jesse Samek, Alex Kiever, and Tucker Mscisz. Samek led the team with 1 goal and 2 assists. This game got a little ugly at points with some failed clears and some long drawn out groundball battles, but those are the games that show the true toughness and grit of a team like this. Not everything was going our way, but we pulled out the win anyway. And our coaching staff was proud of them for that.

Game 3 was against a very good Connecticut Stars team. This game was a defensive battle with the Clams scoring well distributed, which we like to see. The offense was led by Kiever, Samek and Brown. And the defense that held the CT Stars to only four goals was led by Chase Murphy and Andy Hook in the cage, as well as great groundball play out of David Shektman and Austin Frank. This was probably our toughest game of the day and once again the Upperclassmen Blue prevailed with some tough defensive stands and some great groundballs between the lines.

-T.F.


2014 AA (2-0-1) 2015 AA (0-2-1)
Sunday the 2014 AA team traveled out to UMass for their first tournament of the Fall Tour. And the day did not start easy. Our first match up was with a strong Connecticut Hurricanes team that came out looking to set the tone early with two quick goals. But the growth and maturity of the 2014's shined through as we fought our way back to tie the game and then in the last 10 minutes we began to assert our will on them, eventually walking away with a 5-3 win.  Danny Seibel's goal and two assists capped off the come-back, but it was midfield play from Drew O'Connell and Josh Gordan that helped spark the drive.

Our second match-up of the day was against a familiar foe in the Laxachussets 2013 team. In this game we wasted no time, carrying the momentum we had built from our first game into this one from the outset. With dominant play in all areas of the field from defensive pressure to ground-balls to offensive possessions, we were able to build and maintain a lead finishing with a 7-2 win.  The charge was led by Tyler Breen (2G, 1A), FOGO Colin Orr (6 of 7 w/ 1G) while great middie play was punctuated by an acrobatic goal from Austin Gaiss (1G).

Our last game of the day once again had us facing off with a Laxachussets team, this time their revolving-door 2014 team (their number of bench players grew and grew as the game progressed). And this game was one that if you are a fan of lacrosse you would have loved to watch. The game itself ended in a 7-7 tie, which was fitting on this day as both teams were evenly matched. We fell behind early again, but shook off the deficit to tie and then take the lead with a goal and assist from Andrew Gallahue and 3 consecutive from Danny Seibel. Then they went on a run to regain the lead. In the closing minutes we again upped the ante and tied the game with only a few minutes to go on a goal from Tyler Breen. And that's where it ended.

Our attack (a total of 20 points from the attack) led the way with UVA-bound Tyler Breen as the pace-setter putting up 5 goals, 3 assists while scooping up 5 ground-balls with Danny Seibel right behind him with 5 goals and 2 assists. Parker McKee (1 goal, 1 assist) led a very strong midfield group that was the catalyst for much of the offense created despite not having the points show up in large numbers on the stat sheets (oh, how I wish lacrosse would adopt a hockey-style assist system). Face-off man Colin Orr went 18 for 28 (64.3%) at the face off "X", grabbing 12 ground-balls and added a goal to the cause. Zach Ambrosino and Brett Clark led the defense in ground-balls with 6 apiece.  The work of the defense held our opponents to an average of 4 goals per game.

Next up: Hofstra.

-T.P.

First game saw us face Team Admiral Gold, from New York. Team was made up of mostly sophomore and junior players. Their coach mentioned that this wasn't a club team, but a one that has been together for a couple of years. We went down by three goals, and it looked like the game was in serious doubt. After we got our first goal, we seemed to start fighting a lot harder. The game started to bend in our favor as we began to become a lot more patient with our clears. The result was some great possessions in the offensive end. We tied it up at five with about two minutes to go in the game. Each team had many chances with the 2015AA squad almost pulling out the W. The opposing coach said that we showed a lot of grit and toughness.

The second game was played on the same field as game number one. More on that later. This was a hard fought battle, once again against some older, faster, stronger players. We started clicking in this game, especially without a practice in a few weeks. Lots of great saves by Henry in this game and multiple players with outstanding ground ball work. Although we wound up on the wrong side of the scoresheet, we began to realize that nothing was going to be handed to us and we had to work hard for what we wanted. Our last game of the day seemed to show how young we really are. In tournaments like this, there are games where once something goes wrong many things follow and the snowball keeps building momentum. Unfortunately not for the good of our team.

This definitely happened in this last game. It was against Team Rip It out of CT. They were loaded with Juniors, and it showed. As mentioned before we played our first two games of the day on the older artificial turf. Well game three was on grass, with lots of lines painted all over it. Many of these lines had both teams confused. As we struggled in almost every aspect of this game, it was evident that our ground ball work suffered the most because of the ease with which one can pick up a ground ball on turf compared with grass. In looking forward to next weekend, I am hopeful that the 2015 AA's will build upon what they learned from this weekend.

-T.O.