The Boys' Latin lacrosse team had a chance to see how it stacked up against the country's top-ranked team Tuesday when undefeated Conestoga (Pa.) visited.
The No. 4 Lakers were able to match goal for goal through regulation, but the visiting Pioneers made quick work in overtime to leave with a 7-6 win.
Conestoga senior long-pole defenseman Jamie Ikeda scooped up the overtime-opening draw at midfield and made a straight line to the goal, bouncing home the game-winner 11 seconds into sudden death for the win.
Boys' Latin (7-2) got a dramatic tying goal from senior attackman Ben Pridemore with four seconds left in the fourth quarter to force the extra time.
After the game, Boys' Latin coach Bob Shriver talked about the three shots his team had that clanged off the pipes and others that were stopped in the midst of Conestoga junior goalie Robbie Zonino's 12-save performance. He was disappointed with the outcome but liked the way his Lakers defended, scrapped for balls at midfield and created chances on attack.
The Pioneers (6-0) became the nation's top team in InsideLacrosse.com's power rankings when they defeated preseason No. 1 Calvert Hall, 11-10, on March 23. The website has Boys' Latin ranked 17th in the nation.
"If that's the best team in the country ... I felt we outplayed them today," Shriver said. "They're really good. They're athletic as all get out, they play great defense and they have a sensational goalie. If we didn't outplay them, we sure played with them. So if that's what it's going to be for the rest of the year — if we can keep that for the rest of the year, that's the one positive we can take from it."
After the Lakers jumped out to a 2-0 lead on first-quarter goals from Casey Rees and Colin Heacock (two goals, one assist), the Pioneers would recover to take a 3-2 lead. The game would have five ties, with neither team enjoying more than a one-goal advantage the last three quarters.
Sophomore Tally Bruno side-stepped a defender and beat Zonino to give the Lakers a 5-4 lead with 10:29 left, but the Pioneers responded with two straight goals, reclaiming the lead at 6-5 with 2:07 to play on Tyler Brooke's second goal of the game. The Lakers had possession for the last minute of regulation, firing four shots wide largely because of strong man defense. But the Lakers would make good on their final chance when sophomore Shack Stanwick fed Pridemore, who fired a shot from the left side that trickled past Zonino.
Ikeda quickly ended the Lakers' upset plans.
"That team gave us all we could handle," Conestoga coach Brian Samson said. "Boys' Latin was prepared to play us, they worked so hard and I felt they really neutralized [our dangerous attackmen]. They did a great job on ground balls. I thought it was a pretty evenly matched game."
Goals: C—Brooke 2, Frisina 2, Lord, Atkinson, Ikeda; BL—Heacock 2, Rees, Chell, Bruno, Pridemore.
Assists: C—Klunder, Lord; BL—Heacock, Stanwick.
Saves: C—Zonino 12; BL—Knight 5, Caplin 3.