CROSS RIVER, N.Y. After the game-ending horn sounded, the Somers High boys lacrosse team stormed goalie Chris Cousin to celebrate a 9-6 win over rival John Jay-Cross River on Thursday in a match-up of two of Section 1's finest teams.
The Tuskers, who benefited from 12 outstanding saves from Cousin, improved to 5-1. But it started out slow for Cousin, who allowed four goals in the first quarter. But after that, the defensive trio of David Cordes, Brian Jordan and Kevin Schurr, along with Cousin, held the potent John Jay offense to two goals, both in the third quarter.
"We made some mental errors in the first quarter, which was due to the jitters," said Schurr, who shadowed Matt Ferentini throughout. "After that, we got in sync, started communicating better and had a better grasp of our match-ups."
After Ferentini scored his third goal with 2:17 remaining in the first quarter for a 4-2 John Jay lead, Somers reeled off the next four. Tim Cousin closed out the first with a goal, Kevin Cousin added two in the second and Chris Marasco opened the third quarter with a goal for a 6-4 lead.
John Jay (4-2) evened the score at 6-6 on goals by Andrew Duffy (man-up) and Tom Beck. But from that point, Chris Cousin became an impenetrable wall.
"Chris is such a great goalie, that he takes the pressure off of us," said Schurr, who will attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point next fall. "When Chris makes those big saves, it's a boost to us and shifts the momentum back to us."
After Somers took the lead on Alex Corpolongo's goal 48 seconds into the fourth, John Jay generated some excellent scoring opportunities. Chris Cousin's biggest saves came on consecutive point-blank shots from Brandon Lee and Doug Brown with 4:19 on the clock.
Somers responded with a goal from Anthony Carpenter with 4:05 remaining. Just 49 seconds later, Carpenter added another.
"This leaves such a better taste in our mouth after last year," Schurr said. "We had some mental lapses in the fourth quarter and overtime that cost us."
Schurr was referring to a John Jay victory in overtime. Schurr will have family bragging rights, if he so chooses. His father, Tim, is the John Jay coach.
Ferentini led the Indians with a hat trick. Defenseman Jack Lambert scored John Jay's first goal, set up by defensive teammate Danny Caiola. Goalie Thomas Branca made 12 saves.
Somers 3 2 1 3 9John Jay 4 0 2 0 6
Scoring First quarter JJ: Jack Lambert (Danny Caiola), :26; S: Alex Corpolongo (Mike Ashikari), 1:21; JJ: Matt Ferentini (Shawn Smith), 2:21; JJ: Matt Ferentini, 6:06; S: Kevin Cousin, 7:12; JJ: Matt Ferentini (Brandon Lew), 9:43; S: Tim Cousin (Alex Corpolongo), 10:26.Second quarter S: Tim Cousin (Alex Corpolongo), 3:56; S: Tim Cousin (Chris Marasco), 8:05.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.