Here’s the story.
Well, maybe just the first part of it.
Somers and John Jay, the two teams that played last June in the Section 1 Class B final, will be meeting for the first time since then, facing off tonight at 7 p.m. in Cross River.
In their previous meeting, Somers won 14-9 to end John Jay’s run of four straight sectional titles in what proved to be the final game of Nick Savastano’s 10-year head-coaching tenure with the Indians.
Because of the new geographically aligned league structure, the two teams will also meet for a second time in the regular season for the first time. That game will be May 4 at Somers.
And, if recent history is any indication, they seem likely to meet again in the playoffs, perhaps in the finals at White Plains, which was also the site of last year’s finals.
But first things first.
There are plenty of stories in addition to that.
For one thing, first-year John Jay coach Tim Schurr is the former head coach at Somers.
For another, Schurr’s sons, Eddie and Kevin, play for Somers. Eddie is a junior defenseman. Kevin is a sophomore defenseman.
Eddie has committed to Johns Hopkins. So too has John Jay’s leading scorer, junior attackman Mike Daniello.
Goaltending should also be an interesting story.
Last season, Somers senior goaltender Chris Longo combined for 43 saves in the Tuskers’ two wins against the Indians, including a 14-9 victory in the Class B sectional final.
John Jay seniors goaltenders Bobby Maher and Fletcher Franklin have split playing time evenly in the first four games, rotating by half. Will that continue tonight?
There’s plenty to watch and plenty for lax fans to sink their teeth into — even those without a rooting interest for either team.
And, John Jay students are planning a “White Out.”
Should be a fun night — with one or more of them to follow.
Elsewhere in the Hudson Valley, second-year varsity program Westlake plays at John F. Kennedy Catholic in a game featuring first-year coaches: 1999 Yorktown grad Joe Bucello for Westlake and Nick and Vinny Savastano for JFK. The game marks a homecoming for Bucello, who was Kennedy Catholic’s coach in 2007 and ’08. The Savastano brothers, of course, come to JFK from John Jay.
In other 4:30 p.m. games, Byram Hills host Rye, Brewster visits Hen Hud, Suffern is at Putnam Valley, Mahopac visits Ossinings, Briarcliff is at Pleasantville and North Salem visits Wappingers.
Among the games in Connecticut, Darien plays a 7:15 p.m. game at Brien McMahon. Wilton hosts Fairfield Warde, Bethel is at New Fairfield and Amity visits Southington in 4 p.m. games.
West Islip visits East Islip and Farmingdale is at Syosset in a pair of 4:30 p.m. games that highlight the slate of games on Long Island. Among the other games on tap: Northport at Half Hollows East (4:30 p.m.), Port Washington at Hempstead (4:45 p.m.), Ward Melville at Walt Whitman (4:45 p.m.) and Connetquot at Sachem North (5 p.m.).
In the CHSAA, rivals Iona Prep and Fordham Prep square off at 5:30 p.m. at Iona Prep. St. Marys meets L.I. Lutheran at 4:15 p.m. and Holy Trinity faces St. John the Baptist at 4:30 p.m.
As always, be sure to post your thoughts on these matchups as well as any info on the scores and game details.
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Posted In: Scoreboard Central