One of the keys for top-ranked Calvert Hall's scorching start this season has been a balanced attack complemented by a tough, physical defense.
With sophomore Stephen Kelly's ability to control faceoffs, the Cardinals have also dominated possession. In Tuesday's matchup with sixth-ranked Boys' Latin, host Calvert Hall used much of that same formula for an 8-5 victory. The Cardinals remain atop the Black Division of the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference with a 5-0 record and improved to 9-0 overall.
"I thought it was a great, team defensive game," Calvert Hall coach Bryan Kelly said. "We're proud of our kids, but we have a lot of lacrosse left. I thought it was a great game, and it could have gone either way."
The Cardinals got goals from six players, including three from junior Patrick Kelly. Freshman Shack Stanwick had two goals for Boys' Latin (5-4, 2-3)
The Cardinals led 4-2 at the half, but Stephen Luck of Boys' Latin cut the margin to one just 58 seconds into the third quarter. Calvert Hall goalie Jack Brust (nine saves) made several stops from point-blank range to maintain the lead heading into the fourth quarter.
"The defense was outstanding," Brust said. "A lot of people doubted us, I guess you could say, but we've really come together as a team. We're playing well together."
Calvert Hall increased the lead to 5-3 on a goal by Matt Diehl from Kelton Black 26 seconds into the fourth quarter. The Cardinals added to their lead almost three minutes later on a goal by Tom Hollenback.
Stanwick pulled the Lakers to within two with 2:38 left. However, Patrick Kelly answered with two goals in 18 seconds to put the game away.
"We got great motion, and the middies played really well," Patrick Kelly said. "We felt great about our chances this year. We're glad we're getting done this season so far."
Calvert Hall opened a 2-0 lead in the first quarter on goals by Patrick Kelly and Brian Bolewicki in a span of 2:10. Defenseman Evan Connell increased the lead to three when he ran almost the entire length of the field with 6:46 left in the half.
Stanwick got Boys' Latin's first goal almost two minutes later, cutting the margin to 3-1. The Cardinals' Johnny Kelly and Wells Stanwick of Boys' Latin traded goals 11 seconds apart with 3:13 remaining in the half.
"We got back in it a little bit, and we had a couple of good opportunities in the third quarter," Boys' Latin coach Bob Shriver said. "We were playing catch-up most of the game. We scrapped and clawed a little bit. They're a good team."