Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Bc Getting Its Shot to Win Toc Final

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Bc Getting Its Shot to Win Toc Final

Article excerpt

UNION - The creed that the Bergen Catholic boys lacrosse team follows is shoot hard, shoot fast and shoot often.

Saturday, the Crusaders will take a shot at their first Tournament of Champions title.

Shaking off a sluggish first half, the Crusaders shut out Summit in the second half and pulled away for an 8-5 victory in Wednesday's semifinals at Kean University. They face unbeaten Bridgewater- Raritan in the final.

"I have been on this team since freshman year and each year we have made it a little further," senior Mike Reilly said. "We lost in the quarterfinals of states, then we lost in the semifinals to Bosco in overtime, then the final to Delbarton last year. This means so much to us. We have grown up playing for Bergen and we are ready to win this thing."

Reilly, a Ridgewood resident, had arguably the most important, but definitely the quickest goal of the game. With the score tied at five, Doug Pula fired a shot wide that went out of bounds. The clock read 8:49 left in the fourth quarter.

Then a whistle, a pass, and a goal by Reilly. It happened in two seconds and gave Bergen Catholic its first lead.

"You know, Doug missed a shot and we got a quick restart," Reilly said. "I camped on the wing and the slide came a little late. They were a very quick sliding team, but this time the slide came a little late and I was able to bury it."

Summit controlled the first half, staying even with the Crusaders on face-offs, and slowing the pace on offense. It led 5-2 at the half.

The Hilltoppers' strategy may be the only way to curb the Crusaders' (18-5) offensive style. Entering the game, they were averaging more than 15 goals a game. On Wednesday they scored their fewest goals of the season.

But in the third quarter, you could feel the momentum shifting, even if the scoreboard was frozen. Trevor Weingarten gave the Crusaders a boost by gaining possession off face-offs, and they kept firing.

After Brendan Mackie scored early in the third to make it 5-3, the Crusaders, by my count, took eight shots without scoring. …

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