Morris East excelled in Garden State Challenge

By Mark Kitchin

BRIDGEWATER– When the final buzzer sounded on the Garden State Lacrosse Challenge on Wednesday, the Morris East team which played three consecutive games on a grueling day, deserved a little better result in the championship game.

On the whole the team which included players from Mountain Lakes, Kinnelon, Madison and Morristown did well to advance to the title game. The South II Hunterdon Region team rallied from a 4-0 deficit to defeat Morris East 6-5 in the title game held at Basilone Field.  

Watchung Hills midfielder Jeff George scored four goals including the game-winner to earn MVP honors for the two-day tournament. Close to 250 athletes competed on 10 teams from around the Garden State in the annual event that was witnessed by a number of college scouts. The games are sponsored by the North and South Chapters of U.S. Lacrosse.

Madison’s Collin Scarpello was a key component of the Morris East attack during the Garden State Challenge. Photo by Mark Kitchin.

Immaculata’s Mark Swintek and Hunterdon Central Mark Diehl also scored goals for South II which as awarded the Sheridan Trophy for its efforts. Both teams battled through 90-degree temperatures that felt even hotter on the artificial turf fields.

Plenty of credit has to be given to the Morris East squad that was seeded third in the North going into the second day. Coached by Kinnelon’s Kevin Kelly, Morris East played three consecutive games on three different fields on Wednesday and endured 10-minute marches to and from Bridgewater-Raritan’s third field, which is located in back of the high school.

North II got off to a fast start in the title game. Kinnelon’s Dom Usinowicz scored twice and Madison brothers Collin and Christian Scarpello each notched a goal to give their team a 4-0 edge. When MountainLakes’ John Reuben had a second-half tally, the Morris East team was still ahead 5-1 before South II’s second-half avalanche.

Montville’s Jake Haimson, right, pressures South II goalie Lucas Jones (Hunterdon Central) on a ride. Photo by Mark Kitchin.

Morris II advanced to the final by defeating the Bergen Countysquad 7-4 in a semifinal contest. Jake Haimson (Montville) scored twice. Christian and Collin Scarpello and Usinowicz registered individual tallies as did Sam Hall (Morristown) and Vincent Sapio (Madison).

The Morris East teams also edged the South East Region squad in its opening contest. The shore squad utilized players from Jackson Memorial, Holmdel, Howell and Colts Neck.

North II Morris East Team

Will Altier – Midfield –Madison

Collin Scarpello – Attack –Madison

Peter Andersson – Defense –Madison

Peter Bergh – Defense – Delbarton

John Calia – Goalie – Kinnelon

Trip Connors – Midfield –Chatham

Sean Coyne – Defense –Chatham

Peter Marchetto – Midfield – Seton Hall Prep

Christian Scarpello – Attack –Madison

Jake Haimson – Attack –Montville

Sam Hall – Midfield –Morristown

Paul Kimmelman – Goalie –MountainLakes

Steven Landspurg – Midfield – Kinnelon

Patrick Landy – Midfield –Chatham

Bobby Lewis – Attack – Kinnelon

Jack Margiotta – Defense – Trinity Pawling

Joseph Neggia – Attack – Kinnelon

Andrew Park – Defense – Kinnelon

John Reuben – Attack –MountainLakes

Vincent Sapio – Attack –Madison

Matthew Sarson – Defense – Seton Hall Prep

Jack Siddron – Defense –MountainLakes

John Spagnola – Defense –MountainLakes

Dominick Usinowicz – Midfield – Kinnelon

GriffinWoodfin-Levine – Midfield –Morristown

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About mcvbb

Mark Kitchin is a boys varsity basketball writer for the Morris County New Jersey area

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