June 10, 2012~Recap from Jere Brophy, Athleteic Director
If you wrote up what happened in Saturday’s Division 2 State Championship lacrosse game and pitched it to a movie producer, you would have it tossed back at you as being a completely unbelievable story.
Well folks, believe it: in overtime, GMVS defeated Colchester, 8-7 in one of the most exciting games any of us in attendance had ever seen, in any sport. Period. I will try to get the details right but I may have missed some, as I was more or less unconscious during the final moments of the game…you will see why…
The game started in very unusual fashion, with neither team able to find the net. Two high-powered offenses, used to scoring in double digits every game, could not get the ball over the line. Freshman goalie Casey Cardon was a big reason for the zero on the visitors’ side of the scoreboard, as he racked up 7 saves in the opening 12 minutes.
It wasn’t until nearly 7 minutes into the second quarter that the ice was broken, as Colchester found the net. About 2 and-a-half minutes later, the Lakers tallied again, and things looked bleak for GMVS.
At this point I will throw a number at you: 57.1 Save that for later…
With just over a minute and a half left in the half, GMVS struck back, as Mitch Grimmer rocketed a shot past the Colchester keeper. Just 17 seconds later, Geoff Pyke drilled a goal home of his own, and the match was knotted at the break.
With new life, GMVS took charge in the second half, grabbing another goal courtesy of Mitch Grimmer at 9:05 of the third period. Another 17-second respite for Colchester…before Hans Halvorsen put another goal in. GMVS controlled the balance of play, but could not get the lead to 3.
The throng of GMVS fans was just about to breathe a collective sigh of relief when Colchester drew to within one again with 3 minutes left. Christian Gallagher pulled GMVS back out in front by two with a nifty goal off a feed by Hans Halvorsen to send the teams into the fourth quarter with the score at 5-3 for GMVS.
Colchester would not lie dawn and got to 5-4 early in the period, but again GMVS swept back, getting a goal from Sam Worley to go up 6-4. Then the game turned dramatically. Colchester proceeded to score 3 unanswered goals in a 2 and ½ minute span, and the shocked GMVS fans saw the score stand at 7-6 for Colchester as the clock ticked mercilessly down. Somewhere in there Colchester had a goal called back for a crease violation, and Casey made a few incredible stops, but the score stood. Until…
As the clock moved to showing seconds and tenths of seconds (inside the final minute), Hans Halvorsen moved to his right, exposing the left side of the Colchester defense. For what seemed like the first time all game, Hans had an open shot and fired past the goalie’s left shoulder…with 0.1 left on the clock!
Not 1 second….one TENTH of a second. Cue aforementioned unconsciousness.
The GMVS faithful went nuts, and the team broke for the overtime with a new spring in their step. The opening faceoff had Colchester with the ball at first, but defenseman Neil Gallagher quickly picked up a loose ball and after running upfield, whipped it to Mitch Grimmer. After faking his man to clear space, Mitch passed to his left to senior Graham Quisenberry, who had an open look on the cage. His bounce shot found the upper part of the net, and the celebration began.
Like I said, I am still reeling from the excitement, so my apologies for any inaccuracies or omissions. Some standout performances come to mind:
-Thomas Woolson- they did not have an answer for him. He was the difference at midfield in the long-stick middie role, as he consistently outran and outworked his opponents.
-Casey Cardon- Showed no signs of being a freshman (as neither he nor fellow netminder Erik Silbernagel did all season, BTW) and came up with some incredible stops all day.
-The defense of Neil Gallagher, Nick Post, Chris Gonzalez and Danny Duffy: Colchester featured an attack that scored goals in bunches all year, yet the corps held together and kept them largely in check.
-The offense. As usual, they spread the wealth, with 6 players scoring goals. They didn’t get frustrated and even to the final moment kept pressing and attacking.
-The seniors: Hans, Graham, Will, Christian, Thomas, Jacob, Mitch and Danny led like champions all season, and today was their reward.
Many others I could mention, but I am exhausted…
The 57.1 seconds I referred to earlier? Two 17-second bursts that accounted for 4 goals, right when we needed a shot of momentum, plus the final 0.1 left in regulation when Hans caused us all to collapse in delirium, plus the 27 second it took for Graham to end the game…pretty tidy bit of work!
Congratulations to Sam and Charlie, and of course, to the entire team on this historic win. It is GMVS’ fifth state team title (2 in girls soccer, 2 in boys), and first-ever lacrosse championship. The 15 wins are far and away our most ever as well. The team played with heart, with class, and with a dogged determination that was truly impressive to watch!
Well done, fellas!!!