One team has won six straight state titles and has the nation’s No. 2-ranked junior.

The other has won four sectional titles the last five years, including the 2007 season when it defeated the nation’s top-ranked team in the state semifinals, and has the nation’s No. 8-ranked senior.

Combined, the two teams have 20 players committed to play at college programs. (Scroll down to see the complete list.)

Darien and Case Matheis (above) and John Jay and Mike Daniello (left) both play competitive schedules that include two-time Class C state champion Manhasset.

But once again this season, the Blue Wave and the Indians do not play one another during the regular season.

What if they did?

Who would you go with? And why? Be sure to explain your reasons here, and don’t forget to exercise your right to vote by participating in our latest poll. (On the right panel of this page, scroll past the “New Comments” and “Popular” tabs and click on “Poll.”)

This topic is of special interest because many have wondered why Darien and John Jay don’t play each season, given the fact they are in bordering counties, similar to the way Darien and Yorktown meet each year. After all, between them, the Blue Wave and Indians have an astonishing 20 college committed players – not to mention their recent string of postseason success.

College committed players for both teams


Richard Gregory, attack/midfield, Union, sr.

Christian Kolderup, defense, Villanova, sr.

Case Matheis, attack, Duke, jr.

Graham Maybell, midfield, Villanova, sr.

Eric Parnon, defense, Maryland, sr.

Justin Shaw, defense, Loyola, sr.

Dylan Torey, goaltender, Quinnipiac, sr.

Baylis Treen, defense, Lafayette, sr.

J.P. Walsh, defense, Lehigh, sr.

Henry West, midfield, Cornell, jr.


Trevor Caviola, defense, Endicott, sr.

Evan Chen, midfield, Bates, sr.

Mike Daniello, attack, Johns Hopkins, sr.

Alex Lanza, defense, Gettysburg, sr.

Mike Lupinacci, attack, Rollins, sr.

Thomas Mertens, LSM, Endicott, sr.

Brendan Morris, midfield, Gettysburg, sr.

Jimmy Morris, midfield, Gettysburg, sr.

Forrest Walter, midfield, Colgate, sr.

Jake Weil, midfield, Dartmouth, sr.

* Previous “You make the call” topic threads

Recruiting coverage

* Updated recruiting review and commitment rundown (for classes of 2011, 2012 and * new * 2013)

* November 2010 Signing Week coverage

* Class of 2010 commitment rundown

* Recruit profile archive

* To get your profile up, click here.

* For a list of committed players with their profiles up, click here.

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Posted In: You make the call

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183 Responses to “You make the call: Who gets the edge – Darien or John Jay?”

  1. LI Phil says:

    Darien will wax JJ by 5+ goals.

  2. laxman says:

    joe, it’s almost as if you are trying to create fights/arguments on this blog with this article/question. Clearly it will be two sided with who ever a person routes for saying their team.

    • Joe Lombardi says:

      Laxman – I think you’ll find there aren’t many “fights” or “arguments” on this blog. What you will find are informed discussions by the most knowledgeable – and passionate – lax fans around. So it’s in that spirit that I introduce this and all topics.

      Will folks disagree? Sure. But I’m sure they will be respectful of their fellow posters.

      Will John Jay fans be partial to their team? Of course. Same for Darien fans. Still, their insights have been, and should continue to be, interesting and informative.

      And don’t forget about the majority of those who visit this site – those who are objective about this topic and neutral to either John Jay and Darien. Their thoughts promise to be interesting as well.

  3. Long road says:

    Both good teams with lots of depth and solid coaching. In season match ups with these two are rare due to out-of-state opponent rules and regs in ct as well as jammed packed schedules. The past means little but these teams have met once recently and do have an early season scrimmage each year that is always a close contest. If J’s defense can slow down matheis then J wins in overtime. Why? JJ returns all scorers from last year and will be as good on d versus 2010 squad and better in goal.

  4. laxer says:

    darien, better defense at darien. overall better team. more division 1 recruits. darien could very well be best team in the nation this year. JJ could win the state championship… but i dont think anyone from any state beats the blue wave this year

  5. Eyewitness says:

    I know scrimmages don’t mean a lot but last year, JJ held Matheis scoreless until the reserves came in. Meanwhile Daniello lit it up from start to finish. Having that legit star is huge for JJ in addition to the overall fact JJ outplayed Darien when the starters were in.

    • Lax Novice says:

      You should have stopped after “lot”. I am sure every fan of their HS team can find a pre-season scrimmage in which they outplayed a team that waxes them in the regular season. Scrimmages are for testing things like trying midfield combinations you are working on in preparation for the games that really count. Making dubious claims that in your opinion who outplayed who (you weren’t actually keeping score of a practice, were you?) is for losers. Winning the last game of your season is for winners.

      And that’s a true fact.

  6. Lax Novice says:

    Yes it does. Darien wants competitive games, there are enough easy games in the FCIAC. John Jay will have comptetitive games with Yorktown, Ridgefield, et al. Darien’s games with those level of common opponents won’t be competitive. Darien has the 2nd of a home and home with Niskayuna this spring, after putting a 9-2 on them at Union College last year. How’d Jay do against Nisky playing virtually at home in the State playoffs?

    That’s why they don’t play, the Wave would rather play Haverford in PA than yet another easy W here.

  7. mark Ratner says:

    Darien was not even that good last year and they waxed Nisky. JJ how did you fair against Nisky?

  8. Just sayin says:

    Darien wins most of their games like 20-1 bc the teams they play are so weak. That’s the way they like it. That’s why they’re afraid to play JJ.

    • laxr says:

      FCIAC is probably stronger overall than section 1, so what does that say about Jay if they can’t beat the teams in their conference by as much as Darien does. Jay beat Rye 8-4 and 11-10. This same Rye team lost to New Fairfield, who Darien waxed 17-5 in the state championship (and Darien could have gone in the 20s if they wanted to).

  9. LI Phil says:

    u really think Darien is afraid of JJ? haha! Not one team on LI, nor Darien, gives a hoot about JJ. Outside of a fluke win 3 yrs ago JJ is a program that has done nothing at the ultra-elite level. Section 1, for that matter, has been on a downward trend for 10 years.

  10. Amy Says says:

    bottom line is after this year jj is going to go back to the 1990 era of kids specializing in just lax. This program will always be good but will not be nationally ranked the nexy 5 years

  11. laxingonli says:

    With all the talent that JJ and Darien have neither team has beaten Manhasset during the last two years and Manhasset has beaten JJ eight of the last nine times they played. It is not the number of committed players a team has that determines great teams it is skill, leadership and heart.

  12. Ralph B says:

    JJ could not handle Bramier pressure defense because they dont have the speed to get away.

  13. ACC10 says:

    Since Lax Power rankings are much more objective than any Darien or JJ fan, lets see what this tells us over the last 6 years. Below is the average national ranking for some of the top Maryland, LI, NY, MA, and CT teams from 2005 through 2010.

    Darien 10.5
    Georgetown Prep 12
    Deerfield 14.2
    Garden City 24.8
    Manhasset 25.5
    Boys Latin 26
    Delbarton 50
    St. Pauls 57.3
    John Jay 73.8
    Gilman 91.5
    Yorktown 116

    • laxleye says:

      I’m not exactly sure of how the lax power formula works but i think its takes the best team from a region and assigns them a score and then other team scores scores predict how they would fair against each other. Most years darien is connecticut’s best team and so their score is fixed to a predetermined ranking and that ranking puts them around 10 every year. I don’t think it’s very accurate with regard to how they would compete in the new york state (granted they are a very good program).

      Anyways you forgot the best program in the country during that time.

      • ACC10 says:

        This is the Lax Power ranking criteria.

        (1) Margin of Victory
        (2) Strength of Schedule
        (3) Quality Wins
        (4) Win-Loss Records
        (5) Polls

        While no poll is perfect, Lax Power gives as objective a view of the best teams in the country as is available.

        Darien has played NY’s Manhasset and Yorktown every year during this period, played Niskayuna last year, and will play all three and St. Anthony’s this year. This would appear to be many of NY’s best programs.

    • slacrosse says:

      Not sure that Deerfield and other preps that have numbers of PG’s on their team each yr should be included or at least maybe they should be asterisked. Very good lax kids + a few PG’s would seem to give these schools real advantages, at least on paper.

  14. laxr says:

    The reason they haven’t scheduled John Jay is they can only have 4 (now 5 as of this year) non league games. Yorktown and Manhasset are locked in every year, and since that would already give them two premier teams from section 1 and long island, they would rather use the other dates to play teams from other areas. Thus they chose Niskayuna (upstate power), Haverford (dominant PA team and best team in the country this coming season), and St. Anthony’s (this game was added late when the extra league game was given, so they jumped at the opportunity).

  15. Lax n stuff says:

    Laxr – Good info on Darien schedule options. Getting info and insights like this make this blog such a great resource for all us lax nuts out there. Thanks again.

  16. Lax Novice says:

    Yeah, we want to avoid losses, so we can play two of the following three teams, St. Anthony, Haverford School, and John Jay. Which one are we not playing?

    Sir, your assertion is absurd. Jay would be fortunate to score five goals, considering they’d never have the ball. Ask New Fairfield how easy it is to get the ball into the box and set up your offense against Darien. In fact, why don’t YOU play New Fairfield and then get back to us. The Rebels would be a giant step up for your non-conference schedule.

    • jeffreyp says:

      this year, john jay is playing, massapequa, manhasset, new canaan, and san ramon from california, all of those teams are way better than new fairfield

    • laxman says:

      This is just an absurd statment, JJ plays Manhasset Massapequa a Cali team, corning east possibly, ridgefield, new canaan..all these teams on a different level than New Fairfield. Also they would score 5 goals easily in fact I think their offense is even better than Darien’s. I think Darien would win the game but thats only because of their superior defense to Jays. but if we look at overall offenses I believe Jay’s is better.

  17. Ralph B says:

    Last time JJ and Darien played JJ won 10-8. with C Daniello with 5 goals

  18. jay father says:

    fisrt off get your facts straight corining is only 4 hours away. The other thing is if it were not for nick sav jj would not be playing manhasset, garden city, syosset, nisky, duxbury etc. the man built the schedule that put j on the map.

    Also remember corning has won a state championship and been to the finals 12 times.

    • Lax Novice says:

      As of now John Jay does not play any of the teams you listed in the regular season. They’re probably all afraid to schedule you.

  19. Lax Novice says:

    Darien is playing Haverford this coming season as part of the Checking for Cancer event being held for the 3rd consecutive year at Haverford School. The Wave have been part of this special event each year, having played (and lost to) Malvern Prep in 2009 and Conestoga last season. That is where the connection comes in, not to mention the desire to play truly outstanding teams no matter where they are located.

  20. Lax Novice says:

    Where will they rank in NY State pre-season, never mind the rest of the country? 10th? 15th? Sorry to say, but the best of Section One isn’t really a factor in the road to the NYS Championships in 2011.

    • P&G says:

      Lax Novice, They should rank in the top 5 in NYS, and the top 10 nationally from a pre-season standpoint. They were as high as 8th nationally last year (finished 19th) and return about 15 of the 20 core members of that team this year.

      I’m not really a fan of rankings let alone pre-season rankings – but if you don’t think they are a “factor”, I say you are mistaken. Whether they win (or get to ) the states or not will play out – but I wouldn’t take them lightly.

      • CT Lax says:

        I’ll say Darien 10, John Jay 8 as my score pick. I agree it’s a shame they’re not playing. It might be nice for Darien to play in the Haverford tournament but how many fans from this area will even see that game? JJ, Darien should play every year on a Friday night or Saturday. The crowd would be huge.

      • Lax Novice says:

        I agree that preseason rankings are only for discussion purposes, it’s what’s on the field in the regular season that matters. And nothing I’ve said here is to say that any opponent would take Jay lightly. It’s just that to shut them down offensively you have to be able to come up with a scheme to simultaneously contain Daniello and not let everyone else get loose in the process. That requires depth as well as athletes, and that is the biggest factor why Jay is likely a head above everyone else in Section One.

        OTOH, with the help of our friends on Long Island, I doubt you’d be able to defend the Indians as a NY Top 5, never mind a national Top Ten. Just in Nassau and Suffolk alone I think you’d find few who would say that John Jay will be better than these teams in 2011:

        West Islip
        Ward Melville
        Smithtown West
        Shoreham-Wading River
        Sachem North
        Garden City
        and probably some others, and that’s not including upstate teams like Niskayuna, West Genesee, Jamestown-DeWitt, nor the two LI CHSAA powers. So that means they start off at #15 just in New York.

        I am glad to hear that Jay has upgraded their non-conference schedule by adding the likes of New Canaan and Massapequa. I don’t know if so-called ‘Pequa is any better than New Fairfield, but I’m pretty sure NC is, even though both teams lost a lot to graduation. NC has two good goalies back and will be better than most people think.

  21. laxman says:

    Darien people, can you stop saying “waxed”, it’s just an annoying phrase

  22. Lax Novice says:

    From what I’m seeing on laxpower John Jay is not on Manhasset’s schedule for 2011.

    • Joe Lombardi says:

      The date for that game has not been finalized, Lax Novice. Ditto for John Jay’s other non-conference games, including New Canaan, Ridgefield and Massapequa. That’s why you also don’t see them on the LaxPower schedule.

      Everyone, please keep in mind, any HS schedules you see right now are not only incomplete, but in nearly all cases, partial schedules. We’re passing along what we have as it happens, so that should not be a surprise, of course. Nothing will be final till February.

      Also, remember, league games have been assigned, but schools are free to change the dates. Example – right now – Arlington is scheduled to play John Jay on April 2, but as I’ve noted that is the likely date of the Yorktown-John Jay game at John Jay, which has been assigned for April 28.

      With all that in mind, be sure to check out this new report:

  23. Jaybird says:

    Lax Novice if you’re so anxious to see John Jay you should have encouraged Darien not to back down from playing us this season!

    • Lax Novice says:

      Try reading what we’re saying. John Jay would be an easy win for Darien, so we’re playing much better teams to get a competitive game rather than yet another mop-up W. Try to beat Greenwich or Ridgefield instead.

  24. LI Lax says:

    I doubt that a Darien-John Jay game in 2011 would be very close…Darien is a legitimate national top ten team in the preseason. John Jay will likely start out in the top 25, but I am not that high on them. Still, with Nisky moving to A, it’s likely they’ll get to the state semis before losing to GC or Manhasset.

    • Lax Novice says:

      What you’ve said is what everyone other than the Jay crowd knows to be true, or is willing to admit in public. I have them about #15 in New York across all classes and the CHSAA, can you suggest just how many LI teams would handle them next season?

  25. Purple n White says:

    One variable John Jay now has is a defensive coaching style that is as good as any team you’ll find anywhere. Let’s not forget defense wins championships. John Jay-Darien would be a good game, but defense would be the difference. John Jay 8, Darien 5

    • Blue White says:

      Take a look at what Darien brings back on D before vaulting JJ’s D above it. New goalie, but they bring back everyone else.

    • Lax Novice says:

      Tonight’s Homework –

      From the list of students found above, count the number of college commits listed as “defense” from both schools, then calculate the “sum” for each school. Then report your answer as an equation using the greater than sign (>) with the higher of the two sums being “greater than” the lesser of the two sums. Finally, replace each sum with the name of the school represented by that sum.

      Extra credit: Write one paragraph explaining how the sum that is “lesser than” will have a better defense.

      Remember, neatness counts. Points will be deducted for any use of the prohibited terms “scrimmage”, “afraid”, or “2007”

  26. jasper says:

    Missing Pickels speed and leadership will hurt big time for jj to stay on the straight and narrow

  27. Joe Lombardi says:

    This just in. Looks like the date for the Darien-John Jay scrimmage will be Thursday, March 24. John Jay is also scheduled to scrimmage Delbarton once again this year, with the date for that Saturday, March 26.

  28. slacrosse says:

    I’ll be rooting for Jay for sure and think it can be a competitive game given Jay’s kids. But going strictly by level of college commitments, hard to argue that Darien doesn’t have a big edge on paper:

    D1 Commits
    Dar: 9
    Jay: 3

    D3 commits
    Jay:7 (yeah high D3’s can be = or better then low/some mid D1’s)

    That being said, “Commitments” dont win games—tough, really good lax kids playing their guts out does–so GO JAY

    • Lax Novice says:

      I resent the inference that having “tough, really good lax kids” is exclusive to John Jay. That sounded like the other guy above who said that Manhasset hasn’t lost to either Jay or Darien over the past two years because they have “leadership and heart”, as if other teams don’t have that in bulk.

      I don’t adhere to the notion that says having more college commits than somebody else means you’ll be better or guarantees a win. Nor does having more D3 than D1 mean necessarity that you have less talent. Kids pick schools because it’s right for the kid and school, and lots of D1 talent chooses a D3 school because of the opportunity as well as for what the school has to offer after graduation.. Darien sends lots of guys to Bates, Middlebury, Gettysburg, Williams and the like who could very well have gone to a D1 school solely for the lacrosse. And as it stands there’s about another 5-6 guys who may commit to colleges before the start of next season, juniors and seniors.

      Last note, of the three common opponents Darien and John Jay had last season (Manhasset, Yorktown and Niskayuna) the margin of victory for Darien was a +10, while JJ was a -9. That’s a +19 spread for the Wave over Jay, in games where everyone was trying to win. This year New Canaan and Ridgefield will be added to the common opponent list, so that’ll have to suffice as a comparison for 2011.

      • slacrosse says:

        Your 1st Paragraph–Agree with all you said! OF COURSE I did not mean at all to imply that Darien didn’t have the same type of kids as Jay which it does! Didn’t think I needed to spell it out when I wrote it–I could have been more wordy I guess.
        It was a shorthand way of just saying that even though a team may not have the D1 commits that another team with real good ability, guts, effort, etc, etc, could still bring them a win.

        Your 2nd Paragraph

        We agree again. You again read too much that was not implied at all into my comment. I was just laying out a clear analytically NARROW observation that if you laid out 10 factors to judge between the teams and 1 factor was, say, “Elite Level of Lax School Commitments” (D!/D2/D3) would have to clearly give this category just based upon cold hard #’s to Darien. Nothing was implied at all bout the reasons for where/why kids commit, that D3 kids are not as talented as D1 kids ETC, ETC, ETC.

        • Lax Novice says:

          And my 3rd paragraph, which shows objective evidence that Darien would be favored by more than six goals head-to-head against John Jay based on common opponents? I hope you’d agree with that too, or at least give some actual facts to support why a game would be closer than that.

          You know I agree with you about 95% of the time, I don’t know where you get the idea that I hate anybody. What I don’t accept are posters who state an opinion and have either no facts to support their thoughts other than rooting for the other side, or made up false facts about things like IL rankings that are easy to disprove. No one can be 100% right or wrong unless the teams actually play, and that isn’t going to happen this season, and Lord knows Jay wouldn’t conceive of playing in 2012 after the graduation losses they’ll have this spring.

          So I’m content with having provided thoughtful, factual evidence of why Darien would beat Jay by at least 5 goals, and I’m still waiting for even one Jay supporter to explain WHY they think a game would be close, based on actual true facts. If that’s what you think is dislike for a school, then you’re reading into things that are simply not there.

          Shooting the messenger doesn’t change the message.

      • P&G says:

        OK, I’ll call you on this lax novice. Here is a fact. You can’t quote games vs. common opponents from one year ago and make “factual” and “objective” conclusions for 2011. No one from John Jay has taken your bait, because your argument is flawed. How’s that? This isn’t a 4th grade math class.

        If history was a great predictor of the future, we can introduce the last time they played for real (John Jay won 10-8 in 2006). Hey we can even look to the CONNY youth games the current teams played in 2006 and 2007 (John Jay won). What? A tie scrimmage between the two teams last Spring? We can’t use those? Exactly.

        I don’t know how many seniors Darien lost that played last year. But here is what I do know – John Jay is returning most of their important pieces from an 16-2 season. As an example, here is a fact, 85% of their 2010 offense returns, now a year older.

        And your comment, “Lord knows Jay wouldn’t conceive of playing in 2012 after the graduation losses they’ll have this spring.” I’m positive John Jay would play Darien any time, any place, any year, as we are not afraid – but respect your program.

        Both teams are very good. Both teams will replace graduated players from last year. My prediction, would be for a close game. Can’t prove it or disprove it, but please spare us on your “thoughtful” and “factual” lecture. It’s your opinion – you are entitled to it, but nothing more.

        • Lax Novice says:

          The fact that you are fumbling for references from 2006 to attempt to show that Darien and John Jay are on the same level shows just hard it is to make that arguement. In 2007 you were better than us. In 2011 our two returning All Americans along with the other big, physical poles returning, save another All American who is now at Stony Brook, won’t let your offense ever have the ball, so it won’t matter who plays offense for Jay. It’s 5-6 goal margin for Darien no matter how you want to spin it. What I provided are actual, relevant true facts from 2010, not a class that is now out of college and in the workforce. I can imagine Jay supporters can’t rely on facts, they really don’t have them in their favor.

        • P&G says:

          I’m not fumbling for anything…You missed the point (again). I’m actually poking fun at you – and you still don’t get it. You can’t rely on last year’s common opponents to determine this years game, no more than you can use 2006 results.

          You are the one spinning, and there you go again claiming “facts”. You appear to only want to just jam your opinion down everyone’s throat and say they are facts – and dismiss everyone elses arguments. I’ll do like everyone else and ignore you and focus on two sided conversations in the future.

        • FrankUrso says:

          PLEASE let’s not bring up CONNY games. Darien (I have no love for the Wavers, by the way) has NEVER structured its program to win CONNY games. They have done well but it is never their intent to “be the best” as 6th graders or 8th graders. These kids are totally different human beings – much less lacrosse players – as 16 and 18 year olds than they were as 12 and 14 year olds.

  29. Miller Lax says:

    Lax Novice seems to “have it in” for John Jay. What’s the deal? Were you cut from the JV team way back when?

    • Lax Novice says:

      No, dude, just trying to make sense of the arguments why John Jay thinks they could hang with Darien for more than one half. From what I have read those reasons are:

      1. We have Mike Daniello. (this is the most logical and best reason)
      2. We have as many total college commits as you do. (not such a great argument)
      3. You’re afraid to play us so we must be better. (This is what the psychoanalysts call “delusion of grandeur”) In reality, every non-conference opponent Darien has save our longtime rival Yorktown would be a huge favorite over Jay in 2011.
      4. See 1.

      As I said earlier, we’ll just have to see how Jay and Darien do against their 5 common opponents (Manhasset, New Canaan, St. Anthony, Ridgefield, Yorkown) and pick a winner from there.

      Oh, btw I was D1 in a different sport, sport.

      • slacrosse says:

        Here’s another good argument. Aside from Daniello Jay’s got many other very strong players some of whom I’m sure the Darien PLAYERS are aware of and respect from games and tournaments.

      • Laxn says:

        I think the fact John Jay has the most talented all around defenseman in Jack Lambert is a big advantage.

        • laxr says:

          Except that they don’t. That would be Eric Parnon, headed to Maryland.

          • P&G says:

            We’ll see. Lambert will go to a better school than that, if that is how you want to judge it – by throwing Maryland into your post.

          • Lax Novice says:

            Maryland’s a good enough school for Ryder Bohlander, so I don’t see why other Lewisboro people would look down their nose at it.

  30. laxr says:

    Wrong. First, Darien has been higher every year on laxpower’s rankings. Second, Darien finished higher in IL rankings than John Jay even in the season they lost (Jay lost twice down the stretch, including to ridgefield, who was run of the mill back then). JJ may have been higher in 07, but I know Darien was also ranked at #24. In 08, Darien was #4 in the final rankings, much higher than JJ. 09 both teams finished out of the rankings. Last year JJ inexplicably finished ranked (ahead of Darien) without any quality wins and one fewer loss than Darien, who: 1. Dominated the team that ended JJ’s season 2. played Sett much closer than Jay 3. had only one more loss with a tougher schedule and dominant victories over Nisky (aforementioned), Yorktown (JJ beat Town by 1), Wilton, and New Canaan.

    I’m not going to be presumptuous and say that this means Darien will be better this year, but the implication that JJ has been better recently (they were only better in 07 IMO) and Darien is scared to play them is ludicrous.

  31. Long road says:

    After reading through the posts here are some observations.

    Most sane people feel that Darien and Jay are quality teams with solid players but nether team at the elite level of LI, at least as of this moment. Would Darien win a state title in NY this year? No way. Will Jay? Long shot. The game between the two would be close.

    Nobody truly believed that Darien is afraid to play Jay. Both teams have other priorities and a scrimmage wont settle anything but it will be fun to watch.

    Lax Novice dislikes Jay with a passion and will surely reply to this post saying that is out of line and just untrue. To that I say, read your own posts.

    Joe Lombardi knows how to stir the pot.

    • slacrosse says:

      Good post.

      But I respectfully disagree with your first comment and feel that Darien and Jay would be somewhere in the mix with the top 10 elite teams in LI.

      Certainly agree with your observation on Lax Novice.

      • LIExpress6 says:

        Agreed. In fact, Darien has been an elite team nationally over the last 5-6 years and has a 3-4 record against Manhasset over the last 7 years, one of our storied programs on LI.

        • Long road says:

          Darien and Jay would/could both be top 10 on the island this year. No questions. Just not top 3.

        • Todd Road says:

          John Jay defense and coaching is better than ever. That’s your difference right there.

          • laxr says:

            Observer —

            As I said earlier on this board, Darien isn’t going to waste the few non league games they have available to play multiple teams from the same league. They are already locked into the series with Yorktown, so why play another Section 1 team when they can play somebody from Philly or Upstate NY that they wouldn’t come across anywhere else.

          • P&G says:

            Observer, well said!

            Laxr – if Darien only wants to play the best teams – then they should be playing John Jay in 2011.

            Is the scheduling strategy to play the absolute best teams (as mentioned above) or maintain rivalries.

            Can’t have it both ways…

          • laxr says:

            P&G —

            That’s exactly my point: they can’t have it both ways. JJ may be better this year than Yorktown, maybe even the next few, but an established rivalry is more important, especially with a great program like Yorktown. There would be no point to a rivalry if all that mattered was playing the best team in a given year – as soon as one of the teams had a year where they were even the second best team in their region, they would be dropped. Plus, it would be in especially poor taste to drop Yorktown because they aren’t the best team in Section 1 right now – Yorktown was kind enough to give Darien the time of day back when the Blue Wave weren’t an established power.

            BTW, just because Darien isn’t playing John Jay in 2011 doesn’t mean they aren’t playing the best teams. Four of their five non league opponents are as good or better than JJ (Haverford, Manhasset, Niskayuna, St. Anthony’s).

          • P&G says:

            Laxr, my point was John Jay was on the Darien schedule in 2006.

            John Jay beat Darien, spoiling their perfect season (Darien went 21-1). Darien chose not to continue the following year in 2007. JJ was actually stronger in 2007, and Darien declined to play.

            Every year since then, John Jay has asked for a game…Darien declined. People can form their own conclusions.

  32. Rollins_Exit says:

    Check this out…I know that Section One has one or two guys who committed to Rollins College and now this…

    WINTER PARK, Fla. (December 9, 2010) – Rollins College announced that Andrew Baxter has resigned from his duties as head coach of the men’s lacrosse team. The team began NCAA Division II play in spring 2008 and Baxter is credited with building the men’s lacrosse program from the ground up.

    Full story:

    I wonder if those recruits are going to stay there or look for another school.

  33. just lax says:

    Is it rumor or did one of the Morris brothers get hurt.That would put a damper on upcoming year.

  34. Blue White says:

    So Darien ducked John Jay in 2007 to take on the lightweight Georgetown Prep which was #1 in the country at the time, Jamesville Dewitt in ’08 the defending NYS B champ and then got involved in the Checking for Cancer event in PA where they’ve faced lightweights Malvern Prep, Conestoga and this year’s pre-season #1 Haveford.

    I’m not a Darien supporter, but it seems to me they don’t shy away from anyone.

    On a separate note, it’s good luck to draw Lax Novice’s ire. Last team that did so was Ridgefield in ’09 and they had a pretty good season save for one game

    • Lax Novice says:

      Thing is, BW, the problem there is that they have no vision beyond Section One. This is the same Hudson Valley that went 1-4 at the Empire State Games, thanks to the NY City entry. There’s no rational way to point out how far Section One has fallen compared to Sec. 8, 11, 3, 5 and 6, both at the top and in depth of competitive teams. Everything is about winning the section as if that’s the big deal it used to be. It’s a shame to see what kind of rationalizations are being drawn because the facts simply aren’t there to support the notion that Jay and Darien are on the same level. C’est la vie.

      Hope you and all who follow the goings on here have a very Happy Holiday.

    • Lax Novice says:

      You’d think the Ridgefield guys would be more appreciative lol.

      With the benefit of hindsight it’s hard to overstate the kind of effect Matt White had on the season they had in ’09. They had many many good players who have gone on to college lax, but White basically did everything to make those two wins possible, running the offense, playing defense, taking faceoffs, clearing the ball from behind his own goal the length of the field to score and win the regular season game for the Tigers. He’s the real deal for sure. I hope whatever happened at UVA this fall that its in the past and we’ll enjoy him playing for the Wahoos this season and the next two as well.

      Btw, the “ire” was simply a lone voice of reason in what was a season of mass hysteria on how great the Tigers would be, supposedly blowing out Darien, certainly going undefeated on the way to league (yes, its 1st) and State (not quite) championships, reinventing offensive lacrosse, the next great program in the FCIAC. They’ll be good again this year led by A. Scott and Shannon, Coach Colsey just needs time to develop the program to get to where they are not judged by the 2009 team but simply recognized for the achievements and improvements they are making. They’ll be a tough team to beat in 2011.

      And by the time we play them it’ll be just shy of three years since they last lost to Darien in the FCIAC final of 2008.

      • P&G says:

        The benefit of “hindsight”? You mean some of your “facts” turned out wrong?

        Question – why is Ridgefield a tough team to beat in 2011, and John Jay isn’t? Using your system, John Jay should be at least 5-6 goals better than Ridgefield, and if Darien is 5-6 goals better than John Jay – then its a 10 to 12 goal difference between Ridgefield and Darien. Doesn’t seem like a tough team to beat?

  35. Lax Novice says:

    You sound like Boise State whining because the real top flight teams won’t play you.

    Jay’s not good enough or special enough. It’s really as simple as that.

  36. just lax says:

    So i guess he didnt have ACL tear,well thats good.

  37. slacrosse says:

    Wishing him the the very speediest of recoveries.

  38. laxr says:

    Again, it would be in poor taste to do this considering that Yorktown agreed to play Darien back when they were still building their program and were not at the same level yet. To turn around and postpone the series because Darien felt that Yorktown was too inferior to play on the same field as them (based on one year’s results no less) would be insulting.

  39. just lax says:

    So does that mean if Yorktown beat JJ down the road that they should not play them. the next yr.If they beat them by 5 or more goals,then should they stop for 2yrs.

  40. Murph's Place says:

    Furthermore, Yorktown held Case Mathias, the attackman going to Duke, to ZERO Goals.

  41. Purple ' n ' White says:

    Well, JJ held Mathias scoreless too in the scrimmage last year until the starters came out. He did have a few “stat sheet stuffers” vs. the backups.

    • laxr says:

      JJ actually did hold Case scoreless, and did a great job on him. However, he wasn’t in after the starters came out, and thus didn’t get any “stat sheet stuffers” (“stat sheet stuffers” are irrelevant in scrimmages anyway).

  42. LIExpress6 says:

    Hard to believe this thread has now resorted to saying that Yorktown stopped Matheis or that JJ could in a game that mattered. If you watch the Yorktown clip on the kid’s below highlight reel, he toys with them…no matter how many points he scored. JJ check out what Matheis did to Niskayuna, the team that ended your season. Your entire team had 6 goals against Nisky. Matheis had 3 goals and 1 assist.

  43. Laxtime says:

    It may have been a scrimmage but John Jay-Darien players treated it like a real game and it is worth noting again the JJ defense did hold Matheis without a goal.

    • laxr says:

      Scrimmages aren’t unreliable because players aren’t trying the hardest (and I am sure both teams did play their hardest). The reason that scrimmages are unreliable is because different coaches use them for different things. Some treat them like real games. But most use scrimmages as an opportunity for a live-game practice, where they can try out new plays, run lots of players through, and just experiment in general without the risk of losing an actual game. However, you are right in saying that the JJ defense did a great job against Matheis.

  44. I-95 Lax says:

    Darien 10, JJ 8 would be my pick if they played.

  45. Laxit says:

    Lambert is the best sophomore defenceman in the country. Period.

    • Lax Novice says:

      From your spelling I assume you mean Canada.

      From what I have seen myself and heard from others Lambert is a top notch defenseman and in a couple of years will hope to be at the level Eric Parnon is now if he stays healthy and continues under the tutelage of Coach Schurr and his staff. I’ll look forward to seeing him at the big scrimmage next March.

  46. rich says:

    Lets wait before we put Lambert in the hall of fame just yet. he will now have to cover the best attackmen and I am sure Manhasset and Garden city will have to say something about that

  47. lax says:


    You OBVIOUSLY havnt seen Lambert play. He shut down quite a few top end attackmen throughout last season and this past summer. And as far as I know since ’06 Jay is 1-0 against Darien. In that game Darien was a 6 goal favorite, and Jay dominated them with a core structure of players that looks ALOT like this group. Ive seen Darien play a number of times, if you can stop Mattheis, which is hard but certainly not impossible, the Darien core looks alot like the Jay core. Also, Daniello is a pretty solid kid who requires attention, as are Walter and Weil. It reminds me of R-field with Matt White, the WHOLE TEAM revolved around Whites playmaking ability, and id say, at this point, that White was better than Mattheis. Plus, beating a Constabileless New Fairfield with 9 goals in a game, though impressive, not difficult, Id go out on a limb and say that Jay dominates New Fairfield pretty well. In the end, the game would have to be played, simple as that.

    • laxr says:

      As far as I know, all of the players on both sides of the 06 game are in college now, so implying that that game is at all relevant to a hypothetical matchup in 2011 is kind of ridiculous. Also, I seem to remember Ridgefield beating John Jay that year, as much bigger underdogs (before they were any good). I’ll agree that outside of Matheis, the core is similar to the JJ core, but Darien is much better on defense than offense.

      • lax says:

        So youre saying basically that the 4 d-1 recruits playing on Jays O and the upcomming kids who are getting a ton of looks from some very impressive schools cant figure out how to keep it competitive against Darien. Laxr, lets remember that Jay has the number 8 senior in the nation this year. Id say that your comment about Dariens D shows no respect to one of the better offensive units in New York. Also, Jay will be 100% more solid in the cage, either of the two goalies up for the spot are an upgrade from last years netminders.

        Id say that an argument praising Case and knocking Jays offense by saying that Dariens D would shut down some pretty nasty kids is just silly. We can see when they scrimmage, last year J contained Matheis and actually won the scrimmage, say what you will about scrimmaging but Jay obviously had an equasion that worked against the Wave.

        • laxr says:

          1. I said that the Darien D was better than the Darien O. I didn’t mention the JJ O, so I don’t know how I was being disrespectful. I was pointing out that stopping Matheis and the Darien O isn’t the biggest issue.

          2. The scrimmage last year was a tie, if that even matters.

          3. It was a SCRIMMAGE. Teams use scrimmages to test out lineups and new plays, so what you see from a team in a scrimmage is usually not what you see from them during the season. Thus, JJ’s magic “equation” isn’t really relevant in a real game, much less a hypothetical matchup for this year, not last year.

  48. Laxinnnnn says:

    11 John Jay college commits is huge. That swings the advantage to JJ over Darien.

  49. laxr says:

    Brameier is offensive minded, but Darien has been a more defensive team in recent years simply because that’s where most of the best athletes and players have been. Darien has 7 D1 players on the defensive side of the ball, so regardless of who wins, I don’t think it’s fair to say that Darien will lose because of a lack of emphasis or talent on defense.

  50. long time laxin says:

    Overall I give the edge to Darien, but I think a lot would depens on when and where a matchup occurs. Jay at home keeps it closer as they as always get some nice home cooking from the local refs. They also keep it closer early in the season rather than later. Darien improves considerably as the season progresses as they fine tune personnel/positions and team chemistry. Would not be so close if they played late in the season. Also Darien knows how to win big games when they count for the most…Jay not so much. Look at the trophy cases…Darien’s loaded with championship metal…Jay’s pretty much empty. Think that points out the differences pretty clearly.

  51. Lax Novice says:

    From Lax Novice’s family to yours, have a very Happy Holiday and much health and happiness in 2011.

  52. Base Lax says:

    Hard to pick Darien bc they didnt even win the FCIAC last year…

    • Just Lax'n says:

      As Long Time Laxin points out, “Darien is loaded with Championship trophy….JJ has pretty much nothing”. As ACC10 schooled us, Darien has been ranked by LaxPower around 10th and JJ 74th in the country over the last 6 years. JJ is a nice team with parents and fans who chirp a lot, but the facts show Darien is the far superior team! Merry XMas!

  53. Dec Lax says:

    Daniello + defensive coaching philosophy = JJ 9, Darien 6

    • laxr says:

      Again, Darien has 7 D1 commits on defense. They shut down teams that beat (Niskayuna) or almost beat (Yorktown) last year using an almost identical D.

  54. Just sayin says:

    Case has sick stick skills but Daniello is a true two way attackman and much stronger and more athletic. So having the best overall player helps JJ alot…

    • Lax Novice Jr. says:

      I guess that is why Inside Lacrosse ranked Matheis the #1 attackman in the country for his class while Daniello was the 5th for his….but what does IL know….you are the expert…right?!

  55. Jaybird says:

    Actually Lax Novice they don’t know because they are based out of Baltimore and just pick the best players from state championship teams in other states. John Jay plays in the most competitive state and because of that didn’t win a state title. Even so, Daniello is a senior and Mathias a junior so they don’t appear in any of the same rankings. Having said that, Case is an exceptional talent – a master with skills and with his stick. Daniello also is superb in those areas but is a new generation laxer – a standout athlete as well. There is your difference.

    • Lax Novice Jr. says:

      Jaybird, you are showing your lack of lacrosse knowledge. IL talks to coaches and they go to all the key summer recruiting events (like Nike Blue Chip, Maverik, Under Armor AA…etc) in addition to considering high school play to make their decisions. While Daniello is a good finisher, he is all lefty and makes many more mistakes than Matheis. Matheis is faster, quicker, makes many fewer mistakes, has far better stick skills, and is a much better play maker. Bottom-line, Matheis has the skills you would expect from the #1 ranked attackman in the country and Daniello has what you would expect from the #5 attackman!

      • Lax Novice says:

        Son, I thought I told you to keep shoveling the driveway until it’s clear..

        The difference between Darien and John Jay is much more than a comparison between the two All-America attackmen. I’d love to have Mike Daniello on my team to go along with Case and Henry West. The difference between a Top 15 New York team like the Indians and a Top Ten National team like the Wave is the depth beyond a couple of outstanding players on either side. Mike Daniello is a do-everything player. Case is not even the best player on his team, Eric Parnon holds that proud distinction. It’s the difference between the 20 guys Darien will run in their regular rotation against the however many Jay will throw out there that would prove that Darien is simply on another level. Even Yorktown guys would admit to that.

        There really isn’t any point discussing this topic any further, the real season will be upon us before the snow melts. Then we’ll see once again who is competitive between the Cross Westchester and Route 84 and who is competitive from New England to the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

  56. Lax n stuff says:

    Excellent point Jaybird. Mathies has great skills. Props to him. Daniello has it all – skills, strength and a standout athlete.

  57. Observer Lax says:

    If this were 20 years ago, Mathies’ stick skills and intelligence would rate him among the top players in the land. But the game has grown. Today it’s all about size and athleticism. Good for him that he was able to garner a high ranking from one media source. But ask any college coach now and he will say he recruits athleticism first, skills second. Daniello has both attributes which is why he is by far the premier player in the nation. Please don’t misunderstand me. Matheis is a very good and very skilled high school player.

    • Lax Novice says:

      Next time I see John Danowski I’ll ask him. I wish you had brought this up when I saw the coach of the National Champions at Shoreham-Wading River in November.

      I’m sure the Conor Prunty fans may have something to say about how Mike D. got to be the “premier player in the nation” when they think Prunty is the premier player in Section One. Just sayin’.

      • Lax Novice III says:

        Grandpa, Please be nice to Observer Lax. He knows so much more than Coaches Danowski, Starsia, Desko, Petro, Bates and many more top D1 coaches who made Matheis their number #1 recruit! All of them had a mental block and were thinking of the game 20 years ago! Also, just because Daniello isn’t the top player in Section I, NY, the NE, or according to IL, doesn’t mean he isn’t really the “premier player in the nation”. Observer Lax is the authority on this!

  58. Observer Lax says:

    I certainly do think those coaches were right on the mark in recruiting Case. He is an exceptional talent. I was making a point about how the game has changed (though it seems the appropriately named “Lax Novice” is oblivious to this fact) in favor of athletes. That is not to say attackmen with exceptional skills still do not have a role on contending teams at the highest level of lax.

    • Lax Novice says:

      Since you inferred exactly the opposite with regard to Case’s prospects for success at Duke in your initial posting, I suggest you make up your mind what it is you are trying to say and stick to it, rather than backpedaling when you see in print how silly your attempt to diminish the acclaim earned by Darien’s #4 reads. You can be certain that the young man himself considers the discussion about whether he’s better than this guy or that or rated #1, 2, or 102 to be of little importance. What is the most important achievement in Case Matheis’ career is winning the last game in each of his two varsity campaigns so far, ending the season in a pile with a State Championship medal. As you are likely aware, this is something that no one associated with the John Jay program has ever experienced.

      Oh, and you may have been too busy over the last twenty years to observe that almost EVERY SPORT puts a greater emphasis on size and athleticism than pure skills. Perhaps you’ve taken notice that because of this emphasis on size that the use of anabolic steroids on the high school level has become a problem that all schools and specifically athletic departments at those schools have been diligent to educate families about, especially the serious dangers usage of steroids can have upon young impressionable athletes. You may want to ask around and see if there has ever been any talk about HS lacrosse players using steroids to make themselves more desireable to college recruiters. You might not have to go far to get some surprising answers.

  59. Observer Lax says:

    No backpedaling here, Lax Novice. I’ve always stated the ‘Case’ for Matheis. He will do well at Duke – as a man up attackman at first and eventually as a starter a few years down the line there. Good recruit for them. Just to repeat, if compared to Daniello, you have to give the nod to the player who has strength, speed, athleticism and stick skills. A four-tool player in lax makes for a legit star at the next level. Hope you understand now.

    • Lax Novice says:

      Anyone who considers that the former varsity ice hockey and youth soccer star is any less of an athlete in all respects than anyone in the tri-state area is simply ignorant of his ability. Thanks for confirming that.

  60. Jaybird says:

    Good points on all counts Observer.

  61. Mead Street says:

    It will be interesting to compare these two fine players when they go head to head this season. Wait – that’s right. Darien won’t play John Jay.

  62. LIExpress6 says:

    I must say, outside looking in, Lax Novice is schooling the JJ parents/fans. Observer Lax and Schoolhouse Road, your uneducated grudges against Darien/Matheis, completely devoid of facts/stats, are causing you to lose all credibility. If it is true Matheis was the #1 recruit for virtually all the top D1 programs, do you really think those coaches are going to waste a #1 slot on someone who is anything less than an amazing athlete..C’Mon…really?!

    • Lax Novice says:

      Brother, it’s simply that they don’t have anything else to say. Matheis isn’t as athletic as Daniello? Please.

      The conclusion to this topic is that the only people who think John Jay would be competitive with Darien are John Jay parents and a couple of other Section 1 guys and Darien haters. In over 150 posts here, no one from Long Island thinks of John Jay as an elite team, or any sort of factor in the run to the Class B championship. Jay’s season is pretty set long before the games are played, probably go 13-3 or 12-4 in the regular season, maybe beat the Section 2 rep this year now that Niskayuna has moved to Class A, likely get demolished by whoever wins the LI Class B war in the Downstate regional, and go on to live happy productive lives. Nothing wrong with that.

      Hope you’re out from under the snow. Have a very Happy and Healthy New Year.

      • Fact Check says:

        John Jay’s postseason fate is hardly set in stone and Long Island fans are very aware of John Jay. The JJ-Manhasset series has been a testament to that fact, with some tremendous games, including an OT win for John Jay just a few years ago. As for states, here’s a newsflash for you Lax Novice. In 2007, John Jay beat the #1 ranked team in the nation and arguably the best team in HS lax history Huntington in the state semifinals breaking Huntington’s 63 game win streak. Now that you have hopefully learned a “Lax Lesson” that size and speed do matter in lacrosse these days, there’s a History Lesson for you too Lax Novice. We ought to start charging for all the education we are providing you!

        • Lax Novice says:

          Thanks for the education. Having been a regular reader and sometime contributor of Joe’s blog since its inception, I had no idea that the 2007 John Jay team upset the #1 Huntington team led by the Bratton twins in the NYS Class B Downstate regional. Funny it took so long for someone to mention it.

          And I will admit that Long Island is well aware of John Jay, Manhasset especially. Since you’re in an educating mode, why don’t you tell all of us novices what the all-time record is between John Jay and Manhasset, or maybe all-time with all of the LI teams so we’ll better understand why they are aware, and appreciate, the Indians.

          • Fact Check says:

            No problem, Lax Novice. Not sure if you are being sarcastic or not, but yes, it did happen. Sure, it may not be as impressive as winning a Class M Connecticut final 17-4 after once again losing in the county playoffs (Sarcasm). But hey, when Darien beats the #1 team in the country, please do let us all know.
            IT’S A FINAL: I do believe that this mercifully (for Lax Novice at least) ends this “discussion.” Game. Set. Match.

  63. Copps Hill says:

    You must not be reading what they wrote. Observer said he’s a big Case fan and that he will have a big role at Duke. Lax Novice seems to be going around in circles though. He brings up youth hockey and things that have no bearing. I think the main point is Case is great but he doesn’t have the size and speed of some other premier recruits like Daniello. I don’t even think he could argue with that. So far, with the position he plays and team he plays on it hasn’t mattered. Credit to Case! He’s GREAT!!! He’s AWESOME!!! Happy now.

    • Lax Novice says:

      Hey good to hear from you.

      I read what he wrote FIRST before he backpedaled and started showing all this love for Case. You can read that for yourself, if you haven’t already.

      The thing is I see Ridgefield and John Jay playing a very competitive game this year. You have more D1 recruits than they do and with another year under Coach Colsey I think if people arent expecting 2009 all over again that you’ll be much better than last year.

      Have a Happy and Healthy New Year.

  64. slacrosse says:

    Seems like Case is like Connor English of Manhassat/UVA. Small and quick. Both lethal in high school. CE a decent freshman yr but not an “impact player” yet.

    We’ll see.

  65. smartlaxer says:

    If you look at Matheis’s highlight reel you will see him schooling the Niskayuna defender Nikhon Shuler who is a Johns Hopkins 2011 recruit. The funny part of the story is that Shuler was recruited to Johns Hopkins after Coach Pietramala saw how well he covered Mike Daniello during the Nisky-JJ game.

    Both of these players are obviously very talented, otherwise this wouldn’t be such a heated debate. One thing that I think is forgotten right now is that the JJ perspective is based off of Matheis’s sophomore season, if you are worried about speed and athleticism then maybe you will see this develop as he physically matures.

    Daniello in his respect is a very talented athlete who obviously has a very dominant left hand and is very strong as well. From the times I have seen him play his speed is very evident. I am really excited to see how these 2 players match up during the upcoming Darien-JJ scrimmage.

    • Just Lax'n says:

      Good point about JJ’s perspective being Matheis’ sophomore season. In fact, more to the point, his sophomore pre-season. He really came into his own during the year, particularly when it really counted. Huge for a sophomore. Also, wasn’t Matheis injured during last pre-season and the very beginning of the regular season? Anyone know for sure?

  66. Jaybird says:

    The scrimmage will be interesting. The first half atleast before the starters are pulled. I for one will be watching very closely.

  67. laxman says:

    People, there are millions of lacrosse players across the nation, saying Matheis is #1 for his age and Daniello only #5 for his age has no credibility. Four spots is a ridiculously small margin compared to the amount of lacrosse players there are out in the world. To even distinct between the top 10 lacrosse players is impossible and I’m not sure how IL does it because each one of them are incredibly talented for their age. With that being said Matheis and Daniello were, I’m assuming, both #1 or 2 recruits for every single collegiate school across the nation. To compare them is just impossible because they are so different but no matter what they are both who they are, which are the best players on their teams, All Americans, top NCAA recruits, very talented players with all the essentials, and, I’m sure, very nice boys

  68. Laxtime says:

    Yes John Jay has accomplished things Darien has not, but at the end of the day, I think it’s fair to say they are equal programs in terms of stature/college players produced, etc. Considering they are located so close to one another, there’s really no reason they shouldn’t play each year in the regular season. The excuse for Darien playing Hanover (Penn.) instead is a real stretch.

    • laxr says:

      First of it’s Haverford, and I think that no “excuse” is necessary for playing them – they are without a doubt the number 1 team in the nation going into next season, w/ 15 D1 recruits and counting, and almost every starter back from a top 5 team. Also, the game is part of the Checking for Cancer Event, which Darien has participated in for the last two years. I think this game makes perfect sense, and is a great opportunity for the Blue Wave.

    • Lax Novice says:

      I can’t imagine how it must feel to cling to John Jay’s last significant accomplishment in boy’s lacrosse 4 seasons ago as if it were yesterday. I think it’s telling that the upcoming #1 HS team, Haverford School, chose Darien as their opponent at this coming spring’s Checking for Cancer event, while Jay’s era of being competitive with the nation’s best (Manhasset 12 – JJ 3) is long past. So much so that Jay supporters can’t even name what schools those top teams represent, apparently.

      And so the delusion that Jay and Darien are on the same level continues in Katonah and Lewisboro…

      • laxr says:

        Lax Novice, this JJ dissing is really unnecessary. They are a good program, and bashing them does nothing to help Darien’s image. Also, JJ, like many other teams, has never participated in the Checking for Cancer event, so I don’t think you can say that Haverford chose Darien out of every team in the country…they chose them out of the teams who were on board with the event. (this is coming from a Blue Wave fan btw).

        • Lax Novice says:

          First, I appreciate your regular support for Darien, it seems like everyone else is still in Stratton or Aspen before school opens tomorrow.

          I hope you understand that my motivations for my postings on this and other topics. I don’t bash teams, or players, and I dont question coaches motivations or personalities.

          What I do enjoy when we are discussing what-ifs here in the off season are poking holes in the arguments of posters who make indefensible statements in defense of their positions. You’ve done the same of course, only in a more direct manner, pointing out actual facts (some of which I provided you) in support of our position that Darien is a step ahead of Section 1’s top team. The thing is, as you’ve no doubt read yourself, is that those facts are meaningless to those on the wrong side of them and simply dismissed without a comment. In return we are left with comments that in some cases are too unintentionally funny to ignore. The overriding theme of this thread in my view has been the widespread myopia and ignorance of HS lacrosse outside of Section 1 that is the consistent theme of the Jay guys who’ve taken the time to write in. Listening to the overall tone of the best of responses, you would think that to win a Section 1 title would mean you are an automatic Top 10 national team. Early on in this thread, I named ten teams on Long Island that most people there would consider solid favorites over the Indians this coming season. Instead of making a logical argument as to why a Sachem North, for example, would be considered a lesser opponent (which in theory would take some knowledge of the strengths and weaknesses of the other team), instead its easier to bash the poster and repeat ad hominem the same old tired “we beat Huntington in 2007” and “you lost in 2006 so you fear us” comments instead. I don’t blame Jay parents for getting defensive and lashing out at me or you for pointing out their lack of substansive arguments. I’ve been nothing but positive about the prospects for John Jay in 2011 and I have great admiration for Mike Daniello as one of the outstanding players in the country. Yet the fact that you and I point out that Darien has had much better results against common opponents or dare to suggest that Case might be every bit as outstanding (and athletic) as young Mr. Daniello is treated as heresy. We’re accused of “bashing” John Jay (calling for a 13-3 regular season is bashing?) because we refuse to back away from our position that winning six consecutive State Championships does matter, that we are consistently competitive with the Manhassets of the lax world while Jay is consistently not, that we should play Haverford, Niskayuna, St. Anthony and other top tier teams in order to best prepare for our league and State playoffs.

          Mostly, they want their very good Section 1 team to be considered on a level par with our team, despite the lack of accomplishment Jay’s actual record shows. Pointing out the folly of that logic and being unaccepting of weak irrelevant arguments to the contrary is part of the discussion here, and I won’t accept not telling the truth, even if some people don’t want to hear it. Neither should you.

  69. LaxEx says:

    John Jay has in fact replaced Yorktown as Section 1’s premier team. I think Darien’s fear is if they play them every year their Class M state title streak will be tainted by losing every year to a team that has never won a state title. In reality John Jay plays much tougher teams in the postseason than Darien, but still, perception can be reality. Just a thought.

    • laxr says:

      Given performance against common opponents last year, I beg to differ. And you seem to be forgetting that Yorktown won in 2008 and 2009, and thus has one two of the last three (even last year, with one of their weakest teams in a while, they only lost 7-6). And speaking of perception being reality, everything I just said is based on facts.

      • P&G says:

        Laxr, you need to stop hanging out with Lax Novice, and drinking the blue kool-aid.

        John Jay was stronger than Yorktown last year, period. Yorktown imploded – John Jay got stronger, after beating Yorktown head to head.

        Historically, using laxpower archives John Jay had a higher ranking than Yorktown in 5 of the last 7 years (2004-2010). Those are facts, so what LaxEx said carries validity and weight.

        • laxr says:

          This post was more about Yorktown than Darien, so no kool-aid here. JJ is the premiere team in Section 1 at this point in time, I won’t argue with that. But my point is that JJ hasn’t exactly dominated Yorktown in the last couple of years, so to say that JJ has “replaced” them implies that they will be the best team every year the way Town used to be, which is a bigger stretch.

          • Lax Novice says:

            If Jay is the national power everyone there seems to assume they are, then they will certainly dominate the so-called super league in their section. You can’t claim to be on the same level as Darien, Garden City, Manhasset, West Islip and so forth without whupping up on Yorktown and the rest of the county in dominating fashion. Eeking out victories like last year simply won’t do. You have to beat teams like Somers, Rye, and Lakeland Panas by the same types of five or six goal margins as Manhasset beats Jay by historically to even be in the conversation of a Top 5 team in NY State. Of course in Lewisboro they are convinced they’ll do exactly that, since they are on the same level as we are, as we’ve all become accustomed to hearing about.

  70. P&G says:

    Great post on so many levels…

  71. Lax Novice says:

    How about one in a row in reality instead of six in a row in fantasy land? Maybe when you play Yorktown you can take a look at the trophy case and see what a New York State Championship trophy really looks like.

  72. ACC10 says:

    It is clear that Darien is competing on a national stage, playing the best out-of-conference teams in the country every year, regardless of location. Success with this schedule has helped them achieve an average Laxpower national ranking of #10 over the last 6 years vs #74 for JJ and includes annual games with Yorktown (Section I) and Manhasset, two traditional powers. To compete on a national scale, it would not make sense for Darien to play two Section I teams in a given year.

    Therefore, the real debate is who is the better Section I team for Darien to play…Yorktown or JJ? Certain questions should be answered. Should loyalty to a great Yorktown program prevail over what might be a slightly stronger JJ program over the last several years? Will JJ be as strong as Yorktown once the Daniello family is absent from the program?

  73. Just sayin says:

    National stage??? Are you for real??? Try winning your county first. Losing to Ridgefield 2 years ago and Greenwich last year makes Darien an also ran in Fairfield let alone the US of A.

    • ACC10 says:

      Just sayin, what does the average Lax Power national rankings over the last 6 years tell you about Darien’s, JJ’s and Yorktown’s performance on a national level?

      Darien 10.5
      Georgetown Prep 12
      Deerfield 14.2
      Garden City 24.8
      Manhasset 25.5
      Boys Latin 26
      Delbarton 50
      St. Pauls 57.3
      John Jay 73.8
      Gilman 91.5
      Yorktown 116

      • P&G says:


        A better indicator (as to relative strength) is to use the teams normalized power ratings.

        From 1994 through 2010, Darien was 99.2, and John Jay was 98.3. For those that are not familiar with these ratings, the difference between the two numbers would represent the expected goal differential between the two teams.

        Thus using data for a 7 year period, the expected difference is less than one goal (0.9). Thus Darien was better, but not by much. Anyone suggesting anything else is just coming off as a “fan”.

        Any predictions for anything other than a close game (if they played in 2011), where John Jay has its best team since 2007 is extremely misguided.

        • slacrosse says:

          Good analytical point.

          Would have agreed with your common sense last paragraph/ conclusion 75+ comments ago!

        • ACC10 says:


          We agree…whether you use Lax Power “power ratings” or the LP year-end rankings, Darien has clearly been the stronger team from 1994 to 2010. We also agree that if the two teams played in 2011, it would be a good game.

          The fact still remains, Darien will only play one Section I team with its finite 4-5 out-of-conference games per year. No one has presented a good argument as to why Darien should give up its annual game with one of the sport’s historic powers, Yorktown to play JJ.

        • Lax Novice says:

          Most people would think that the +19 goal differential that the Wave have over the Indians over three common opponents in 2010 might be more relevant to the question, but it’s apparent that Jay posters aren’t most people when it comes to the reality of their program’s prospects in 2011.

    • slacrosse says:

      Yeah even Lax Novice can’t argue that one!

      • Lax Novice says:


        In 1994 this year’s HS junior class was born, in most cases. The topic at hand is who would win a game between Darien and John Jay in the spring of 2011. There is nothing relevant statistically to that outcome that would involve an LP rating from 1994 through any year prior to any of the current players being part of the team, that year being 2008. Even that may be irrelevant, since 2011’s seniors would have been freshmen in 2008 and perhaps only Mike Daniello and Eric Parnon had any kind of role on the 2008 teams. So the only LP ratings that matter are those of 2009 and 2010, if you are attempting the estimate the relative strengths of the 2011 teams on that basis.

        If you want to argue a different question, such as which program has been the most proficient over the past 5 years, 10 years, 16 years, then those older ratings would matter. But using 1994 data to predict how a 2011 high school game might turn out? Even a HS junior knows that’s a dumb idea.

        • Kat Lew Lax says:

          Hey Lax Novice, would you like some chips with your HATER-ade?? Stop HATING! John Jay plays so many more tougher teams than Darien which more than makes up for the .09 goal difference. I mean please JJ would have won 20 straight Class M state titles if they were in CT.

          Lax Novice tries to cover up the fact that 90% of Darien’s regular season games are “gimmes” vs the equivalent of teams in the developmental team from Section 1 John Jay would never be scheduled against. After when they win 20-3, the Darien folks are all giddy and proclaiming how great their team is. No one buys your con job!

          And nevermind they lose in FCIACs every year. They live in a land of MAKE BELIEVE where those wins and a guaranteed Class M state title justify their importance on a national level. Can you say DELUSIONAL?

          Having said that I really believe Darien is a good program. If they did play John Jay this year and didn’t duck them, I think it would be competitive for maybe three quarters. But tradition, depth and strength of schedule would be the difference…

          FINAL… JJ 12, DARIEN 7

          • Lax Novice says:

            I can say it’s time someone took away the coffee maker and put on some Perry Como records.

          • Kat Lew Lax says:

            Exactly Lax Novice. The alarm clock has gone off! It’s time to wake up from your dreams. Facts are stubborn things. Please accept reality and come to grips with the fact that your little fantasy world is just that. I know it’s tough. We’ll help as best we can. Really – we will!

          • laxr says:

            1. JJ does not play tougher teams. JJ’s 5 toughest opponents last year were Manhasset, Niskayuna, Yorktown, Lakeland-Panas, and Ridgefield. Darien played the first three as well, and did much better against them. On top of that, Darien played Conestoga (better even than Sett from what I saw) and most of the top tier FCIAC teams. This year the schedule is even better, with surefire national preseason #1 Haverford (replacing Conestoga) and St. Anthony’s added to the schedule.

            2. The FCIAC is a superior to Section 1. Wilton (spanked Town last year, and beat them in 09 as well), New Canaan (beat Lawrenceville, lost to Garden City 5-4), Greenwich, Staples, Ridgefield, St. Joseph’s, Fairfield Ludlowe (this year anyway with the return of the Errett twins)…that’s a formidable group. Ridgefield was the 6th best team in the FCIAC last year, and they were competitive w/ 3 of Section 1’s top 4.

  74. Dude says:

    read thru all these posts. great stuff. not one person who isnt from JJ thinks JJ would beat Darien; yet a bunch of folks from LI think Darien would crush JJ.

  75. CT Lax says:

    Darien’s D is much more experienced… Darien 9, John Jay 5

  76. justlaxin says:

    Laxr says….Town beat Darien in ’09.
    Section 1 and the FCIAC are very comparable. Lets not get petty.
    I think Darien is underestimated this year a little bit.
    I do think JJ, Town and Darien will all be very close.
    Town is counted out bc of one tough year.
    In ’08 and ’09 they were pretty awesome. They appear to be back on that track again.
    Great teams and its awesome how close they are to eachother that we get to see them all play.

    • laxr says:

      I don’t think Town will be back up with JJ and Darien for a couple more years. In fact, I think they could potentially be worse this year than last year. They lost quite a few playmakers in KI, Lieberman, Burke, and Koelsch. The only big-time seniors this year are Schuldt and Mabus. Having said that, I’ve seen some of the younger guys getting props from Inside Lacrosse recruiting analysts, so they should be well off down the road.

  77. justlaxin says:

    No chance. Fusco, Gately, Mariano and their D with Cooley, Fusco, Fahey and Trevor.
    They will be excellent this season. This past summer, many of those guys played together at summer tourneys and did real well. Their underclassmen are excellent, freshmen to junior class. With Mabo, Schuldt, Fahey and others like Terry and Thorpe they should do real well. Im excited about this team as I think they will be much better than last years team who failed to gel at all. This years team will be very athletic which past Town teams have had as well.

    • laxr says:

      Who knows how the team will mesh. They very well could be better if they play well together. But when you look at who they lost, and which guys are returning, I don’t know if the starting lineup looks that much better. Although a lot of people believed KI had a down year, he drew a lot of attention from defenses, which opened up the offense for other players. Lieberman is also a big loss. All the guys you listed are talented players, but most of them are also very young. I think Town is 1-2 more years away from getting back to the very top.

      • P&G says:

        Laxr, agreed….

        Even though their seniors underperformed last year – they leave big shoes to fill. On defense losing Koelsh and Burke is big. The young kids can certainly duplicate last years un-Town like record of 11-8. I’m not sure they can better that in 2011 given their out of league schedule. With that said, I don’t think they win the section (JJ will), but can win back the Murphy Cup.

        And I also agree with your comment that in a year or two Yorktown will be back on top (gulp) for a bit.

  78. Rowaton Lax says:

    I’ll go with 8-4 Wave

  79. Laxrr says:

    I think it would be a sick game but JJ would win by like 2goals.

  80. Wally says:

    JJ 9 Darien 7

  81. Just sayin says:

    Dang after all the talk about this scrimmage I wonder if maybe like ESPN will considering showing it liveeee

  82. JESsie says:

    Darien should also play Fairfield Prep. What’s up with that?

    • laxr says:

      They scrimmage Prep nowadays. Considering that Prep treats most of their regular season games like scrimmages anyway, I’d say there’s not much difference between doing that and actually playing them during the season.

  83. Laxtime says:

    So what’s the deal? Why doesn’t Darien play Fairfield Prep??

  84. CT Lax says:

    Jessie – 100 percent on that

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