St. Paul's holds off Mount St. Joe

Lineup changes help Crusaders to 13-9 victory in boys lacrosse

Spring Sports

March 29, 2006|By TODD KARPOVICH | TODD KARPOVICH,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Yesterday, in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association opener against No. 6 Mount St. Joseph, St. Paul's coach Rick Brocato had to change his lineup because his top defensive midfielder was home sick and one of his best attacking midfielders missed the entire third quarter after taking a hard hit.

Even though it was the 10th lineup change of the season, the No. 5 Crusaders showed their depth by opening up an early lead and holding off a late surge by the visiting Gaels for a 13-9 win. Early- season injuries and sickness have hampered the Crusaders each game, but Brocato said his team has learned to adjust and has done the little things, such as winning ground balls and maintaining possession, to remain undefeated.

"It was a huge win in this league," Brocato said. "I thought their goalie [Kevin Benzing] played tremendously. I think their first midfield is as good as anyone in the league. We did a good job trying to keep them in check as much as we could. You can't stop them, but we were able to get some plays defensively."

The Crusaders used a balanced attack to keep Mount St. Joseph in its own defensive end for much of the first half and took an 8-4 lead into halftime. St. Paul's also did a good job spreading the ball around as seven players scored goals in the game.

Despite missing the entire third quarter, Cryder DiPietro led the Crusaders (10-0) with four goals. The senior midfielder said he couldn't see straight after taking a hit in the first half, but he returned for the fourth quarter and created match-up problems for the Gaels.

"My vision was all blurry and I was just not ready to go back in, but after I sat out the third quarter, I felt better," said DiPietro, who will play at Towson next season. "It was a good way to open the season. There is a lot of talk about Mount St. Joe and we have been under the radar, so it was good to get out and get a big win under our belts."

Patrick Sweeney had two goals and three assists for St. Paul's, and Austin Boykin had two goals and an assist. Mount St. Joseph (5-1) never led in the game, but it was able to cut the margin to 9-8 on a goal by midfielder Jordan Pierce with 11:16 left in the fourth quarter. However, St. Paul's answered by scoring two goals in a 1:07 span to kill that momentum. Tim Anderson, Justin Mulford and Dan Holub each had two goals for Mount St. Joseph.

"It's the first league game, so there were a lot of jitters," Gaels coach Tony Brockmeyer said. "We knew we would have a problem defensively because that is where we are most inexperienced. Offensively, our shooting has got to get a little better."

No. 1 Loyola 7, No. 7 St. Mary's 6 -- Joe Lennon led the visiting Dons (5-1) with four goals in a hard-fought game against the host Saints (3-1).

No. 2 Boys' Latin 11, No. 3 Gilman 7 -- Brett Weiss led the visiting Lakers (8-0) with four goals and an assist in the win over the Greyhounds (3-3). The Lakers led 6-0 after the first quarter, but Gilman made a late run in the fourth with the help of twin brothers Brian and Kevin Carroll, who combined for five of Gilman's seven goals.

Girls lacrosse

No. 1 Mount Hebron 17, Centennial 4 -- Megan Bosica led the host Vikings (1-0) with three goals and one assist over the visiting Eagles (2-2) as Mount Hebron achieved its 80th consecutive win. Jacqueline Giles added four goals.

Softball

No. 12 Institute of Notre Dame 2, No. 14 St. Vincent Pallotti 1 -- Jessica Vetok singled to right field to score Becca Nicely in the bottom of the ninth inning as the Indians (2-2, 2-1) escaped with a win over the Panthers (1-3, 0-1) in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference. "Defensively, both teams played very well," said Indians coach Greg Ehrman. "We just finally came up with a big hit."

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