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Boys Lacrosse: Rebels battle, but Hubs still best

April 10, 2012|By MARK KELLER | keller@herald-mail.com
  • South Hagerstown's Isaac O'Brien, left, and North Hagerstown's Orin Keel scramble for a loose ball during Tuesday night's MVAL Antietam boys lacrosse game at School Stadium.
By Ric Dugan/Staff Photographer

HAGERSTOWN — In recent years, the result of the North Hagerstown-South Hagerstown boys lacrosse match has been a forgone conclusion.

The question wasn’t, “Will North beat South?” It was, “How badly will North beat South?”

The Hubs and the Rebels met again Tuesday night at School Stadium, and even though the final result was the same — a 17-6 North win — the overall feeling was totally different.

For one quarter, the result wasn’t a forgone conclusion. For one quarter, the Rebels held the lead.

“At that point, they were focused and they were following the gameplan,” said South coach Dave Tallant. “When they focus, they achieve results, and that’s what was happening.”

It didn’t hurt that it was a North-South game. It also didn’t hurt that Tallant — in his first year at South — was facing the team he had coached the last three seasons and a number of players he has been associated with for years in the local youth lacrosse organization.

The Rebels (0-5) came out firing and controlled possession for much of the first quarter. Goals by Noah Wright and Tyler Bradshaw gave South a 2-0 lead with five minutes left in the quarter.

North (2-4) evened the score on goals by Reed Jimenez and Drew Brooks. South keeper Drake Kessel made a pair of point-blank saves to preserve the tie before Bradshaw scored again with 43 seconds left in the quarter and South led 3-2 at the end of one period.

“Coach Tallant does a great job getting teams ready, getting them fired up,” said North assistant coach Randy Brown. “They were beating us on ground balls and really playing well. It took us a quarter to start running the offense and possessing the ball.”

It took the Hubs just 30 seconds in the second period to tie the score again on a goal by Brandon Brown. Kessel made another big stop on Brooks, but Brown found the back of the net with 10:49 left in the second to give the Hubs the lead for good.

North scored six straight goals to stretch the lead to 8-3 before Jordan Foster broke the string with a score for South with 3:10 to play in the first half.

“We lost some of that focus and went outside the gameplan,” Tallant said. “One of the things we’ve been trying to teach this year has been to keep a positive mindset and stay in the game, even when things are going bad. That’s one of our challenges.”

North led 10-4 at halftime and stretched the lead to 12-5 at the end of three.

Brown finished with five goals and two assists, Alex Unger had four goals and two assists and Jimenez, Brooks and Kyle Hewlett each had two goals for the Hubs. Jimenez had three assists and Peter Perini added two.

“We had some speed bumps in the beginning of the year, but things are starting to click now that we’re getting more game time in,” Randy Brown said. “I think they have a better understanding now of the system and running the things they’re supposed to run.”

Wright, Bradshaw and Foster each had two goals for South.

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