Ben wasn't too happy during one particular game, when he was open along the crease, waiting for a pass from Joe that never came. Where's the brotherly love?
"I gave him an earful, and he was like, 'Dude, I didn't see you' " Ben said. "But I'll tell you what — it's great seeing him do so well, and I'm proud of him. He's going to be a four-year varsity guy, and that's pretty cool."
As for the times they do connect — mostly Ben finding Joe for a goal like the one against South River — it's a special moment on the field and in the stands.
"When your kid gives your other kid an assist, it's like, 'Wow — proud moment,' "father Alan Seider said. "But when the two brothers hug each other afterward, you can sort of feel the love there. There's a real sense from them of 'Wow, I'm proud to be playing on the same team as my brother.' "
This season is back to the norm for the Bittner brothers, who grew up playing lacrosse and basketball together on numerous recreational teams. Last year, Nick made varsity as a sophomore while Will was a freshman on junior varsity.
"Last year just felt different because we're so used to playing on the same teams. He kind of keeps me cool, and I always make sure to keep him in check," Nick said.
The ideal ending would be Hereford celebrating another state title this month, but the story is already a successful and memorable one. Along with their fine work on the lacrosse field, all six are excelling in the classroom, with each maintaining a grade-point average above 3.0.
"You look at all the brothers out there, and you know it's something they can all look back on years from now and say, 'How cool was that?' But I also hope they can appreciate it today." said Alan Seider, who also coached most of the players in club lacrosse.
King, who was unable to find any extreme instances of conflict among the brother pairs throughout the season, finally came up with a negative.
"The only downside I can see about this whole situation is I wish they all had more younger brothers," he said.