Mount Washington first-year coach Dennis Wey didn't mince words when assessing his opponent in tonight's U.S. Club Lacrosse Association championship.
"Sure, they beat us last year," said Wey, referring to the Long Island/Hofstra Lacrosse Club. "But, the good news is, we took their best player."
That player is Mark Millon, whose four goals in last year's championship game helped Long Island deny Mount Washington its fourth consecutive USCLA title.
Millon, MVP of the 1994 World Games, will try to make it up to the Wolfpack tonight at 8 when they face off against Millon's former teammates at Norris Field.
Millon, whom Wey said is "tearing up the league," is averaging more than seven points and has Mount Washington at 15-0. A rookie last season, Millon has yet to taste defeat at the club level, and he said he doesn't anticipate sampling it any time soon.
"These are definitely the two best club teams going head-to-head, but I think we're a little too deep for them," he said. "We've had a couple of close games this year, but we always wear teams down in the fourth quarter because we just keep coming at them."
Long Island coach Bill Beroza said that Millon's departure was a huge loss for his team but he, too, is confident in his team's chances.
"We have more than enough depth . . . I hope it's 110 degrees when we play," said Beroza. "There's nothing in particular about their team that scares me. I'm not worried about any individual players. My only concern is that we don't play man down the entire game because [Mount Washington] is almost unstoppable extra-man situations."
While Mount Washington may have the world's best attackman in Millon, Long Island (13-1) has three of the top players at their positions in Australian All-World midfielder Gordon Purdie, All-World goalie Sal Locascio and All-World defenseman John Detomasso.
Matt Panetta (Johns Hopkins) is Long Island's leading scorer with 45 goals and Scott Hiller, a new addition to the squad, has scored 18 goals in seven games.
Before the USCLA final will be the Central Atlantic Lacrosse League Championship. The game begins at 5:30 p.m. and matches the Lax World Lacrosse Club against the Westchester/Beck & Wheatley LC.