Boys' Lacrosse: St. Dom's shares wealth, overpowers Oak HillPublished on Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at 12:12 am | Last updated on Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at 12:12 am
WALES — Oak Hill boys’ lacrosse coach Dan Brannigan turned to one of the players deputized to stop St. Dom’s senior Troy Haefele and gave the same speech that at least seven other coaches will deliver this spring.
The assignment: Glue yourself to No. 8. It’s a sound strategy with two loopholes. One, Haefele is slippery enough to find elbow room and unleash a point-blank shot, anyway. And two, the other Saints are good enough to take advantage of the space it creates for them.
Haefele had three goals and three assists on a cold, drizzly Tuesday afternoon, but five of his teammates also found the net in a 12-4 KVAC victory.
“You can’t really take out just Troy this year,” said Anthony Fagone, Haefele’s fellow senior attack. “It was a little bit more like that last year. We have more balance on offense.”
Junior Grant Carrier also produced a hat trick for the Saints (4-0). Fagone fashioned two goals and two assists.
Chris Finlay tallied twice and Tom Applegate and Will Desmarais each scored for St. Dom’s, which dominated the middle stages of the game with eight consecutive goals after an opening strike by the Raiders.
“We have other guys who move and can finish, so that helps a lot,” said St. Dom’s coach Dave Haefele, Troy‘s father.
St. Dom’s slipped away from Oak Hill late in the first half, scoring two goals in a 30-second span to take a 5-1 lead with 1:04 remaining.
Applegate and Carrier were the beneficiaries of dishes from the closely guarded Haefele. Carrier’s goal was a man-advantage situation, something that became all too familiar to the Raiders (3-2) as the game wore on.
Oak Hill was whistled for 14 penalties, nearly matching its grand total of 15 in four previous regular-season game and two preseason contests.
“I think seven of their goals were man-up. You wipe that out and we’re almost tied and my kids aren’t having their heads down,” Brannigan said. “Like I told them, I’d love to scream at them if it was their fault, but I honestly don’t believe it was their fault. I believe this was one of our best games of the season."
Freshman Kyle Flaherty scored twice for Oak Hill. Juniors Jon Averill and Caleb Provost each had a goal and combined for three assists.
Provost rifled a one-hopper past Cody Rodrigue in the third minute of the game for a 1-0 Raiders lead.
Oak Hill unleashed four of the first five shots before St. Dom’s found its footing and dominated both the time of possession and shots on goal categories.
“It was a little rusty because of the rain,” Fagone said. “Some people use different sticks so the rain messes with your pocket. You just settle in.”
Haefele and Fagone connected 26 seconds apart to put the Saints on top. Haefele scored another unassisted goal before the quarter break.
“Lately we just haven’t been finishing,” Dave Haefele said. “They’re doing what they’re supposed to be doing. We’re just not putting it in the goal. We’re taking a lot of sidearm (shots). We’re trying to work on that.”
Rodrigue, a four-year starter, made nine saves for the Saints. Oak Hill freshman Matt Martin stopped eight shots.
The Raiders scored three goals in the fourth quarter despite being flagged four times.
“When we played Maranacook a few weeks back, they got into our heads and we gave up in the middle of the third quarter,” Brannigan said. “We started doing things that we shouldn’t have been doing and it killed us. I was glad to see them finish the game the way they did today.”