Mountain Lakes, Chatham capture sectional titles

Morriscountylacrosse

Christian Cuccinello, Zach Lesko and Spencer Herman each scored two goals apiece to lift Mountain Lakes to an 8-6 victory and capture the North Group I sectional state title on Sunday.

Zander Kotsen and Evan Bernstein also added goals and the Lakers also had strong performances from Sam Walsh at faceoff and goalkeeper Jared Bernstein who finished with 11 saves. The Lakers (15-5) advance to play Group I South champion Rumson on Wednesday at Livingston High School.

Christian Scarpello fired a hat trick and Vince Sapio added a pair of goals for the Dodgers (14-7). Madison led the game 5-4 midway through the third quarter when the Lakers rallied for four of the next five goals. Two momentum changing goals came at the tail end of the third quarter. With the game tied at 5-all, the Dodgers were penalized for having too many men on the field. The Lakers converted when Lesko scored a man-up goal with 15 seconds left in the quarter to make it 6-5. Walsh won the ensuing face-off and got the ball to Cuccinello who fed Herman for a goal that beat the buzzer that ended the quarter. Cuccinello scored again off a Chris Sammarro crease feed to make it a 3-goal game with 9:58 remaining in regulation. The Lakers surrendered a Sapio goal, but some terrific saves by Bernstein helped cement the win.

This is the first year that the NJSIAA is offering sectional titles for the boys teams. In previous years the tournament was separated by groups, after which the group winners would play in the Tournament of Champions.

North Group II

Chatham 4, Summit 3

Sam Carson connected for a pair of third quarter goals and Chatham overcame Summit’s fourth-quarter rally to capture its first North Group II state title.

Joe Ritter had a goal and an assist and Thomas Guida added a goal to spot the Cougars a 2-1 advantage that they kept past halftime. The Hilltoppers made it a one-goal game and held possession for the final four minutes of the contest. However, Chatham keeper Robbie Coe made four of his eight saves in a tense and dramatic fourth quarter and the Chatham defense stepped up big time and preserved the victory for the defending Group II champions. The win also avenged a 9-2 Chatham loss on April 20 and broke an eight-game losing streak against the neighboring Hilltoppers. The Cougars move on to play Somerville on Wednesday at Ridge High School in the Group II final.

North Group III

Ridgewood 6, West Morris 3

The Maroons led 3-2 at the half and pulled away late in the game. Max Evans scored twice, Matt Carfaro added a goal and Alex Kennedy and Mike Selveggi shared eight saves for the Wolfpack (12-10).

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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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