Behrman and Carroll help Niskayuna beat Burnt Hills in lacrosse showdown between undefeated teams
BURNT HILLS – The Niskayuna men’s lacrosse team believe they have enough pieces to win the Section II Class A championships in a few weeks.
In Tuesday’s Suburban Council game against Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, the Silver Warriors showed some of them in an undefeated team clash.
Notre Dame Brock Behrman scored seven goals, including two big ones in the fourth quarter, and Niskayuna stopped Burnt Hills from having a big run in an 18-14 victory at Centennial Field. Niskayuna goalkeeper Tyler Carroll was instrumental in suppressing the Burnt Hills offense with 16 saves, while Lucas Klokiw and Greyson Vorgang rounded out Behrman with four and three goals, respectively.
“I was nervous before I went into it,” said Carroll, a junior. “Then I remembered that we were Niskayuna, and we are not going to lose.”
Niskayuna didn’t and pushed his record to 12-0, but the Silver Warriors had to pass a tough test to stay undefeated against the Spartans (11-1).
“We knew we had to match their intensity,” Niskayuna coach Mike Vorgang said of Burnt Hills. “They played hard. They played smart. They are well supervised.
Burnt Hills never led in the game, but was never eliminated until the final minutes, after a final flurry of action.
“I love our fight,” Burnt Hills coach Tom Schwan said. “We’re a talented team at the back, but we couldn’t play this game. “
Carroll had a lot to do with it, with many of his saves being made up close and at the most opportune times.
“They didn’t give up,” Carroll, who made four saves in each period, said of the Spartans. “Their shots weren’t easier. They got tougher.
Coach Vorgang had a lot of good things to say about the youngster, who went from attacking to goalie in his first year.
“He won the goalie position and it was a really good surprise. . . because we didn’t know, ”said Mike Vorgang. “Every time he’s there he impresses me given his limited experience.”
“Their goalie had a great night,” said Schwan.
Behrman played at the other end of the field with 10 points in total, and the most important goals of the game followed early in the fourth quarter and gave Niskayuna a 17-12 advantage with 6:01 to go. Kevin Carney scored Burnt Hills’ last two goals, with a tally from Leo O’Brien of Niskayuna between them.
“It put the dagger in them,” Behrman said of his two clutch goals, both coming after races from the back of the cage. “It made us feel like we were going to come out with a win.”
“Give credit to Niskayuna,” said Schwan. “Every time we got into the two or three, they had an answer.”
Burnt Hills trailed 5-4 in the first quarter when Niskayuna scored the game’s longest four-goal streak, including two with Behrman’s stick.
“He’s one of the best players in the country and we expect him to be great every time he’s on the pitch,” Mike Vorgang said of Behrman. “He was awesome, and that’s not just that [the 10 points]. It’s the balls on the ground, controlling the attack, knowing when to push it and when to slow it down.
JD Townsend led the Burnt Hills offense with six goals, including a third quarter total that put his team at 14-12 with 3:19 to go. Rocco Mareno played a huge role in getting the ball to Burnt Hills with 23 game wins.
“I thought it was a good game. It was a fun game, ”said Mike Vorgang. “It was probably to our detriment that we didn’t slow down a bit more often, but I’m sure the fans enjoyed the pace of back and forth.”
Carney finished with four goals for Burnt Hills, who had won in an undefeated clash on Saturday when they made up for an early deficit to beat Ballston Spa 11-9.
The Section II playoffs begin next week, but a rematch between Burnt Hills and Niskayuna will not take place. Burnt Hills will participate in the Class B tournament, while Niskayuna – by the size of the school, a Class B competitor – has chosen to participate in the Class A tournament.
Niskayuna 9 2 4 3 – 18
Burnt hills 5 2 5 2 – 14
Niskayuna goalscorer: Behrman 7-3, Klokiw 4-0, Vorgang 3-0, Williams 2-1, Carroll 1-0, O’Brien 1-0, Kerr 0-1. Burnt Hills goals: Townsend 6-0, Carney 4-0, LaPietro 2-1, Swisher 0-3, Scalise 1-0, McClernan 1-0. Goalkeepers: Niskayuna, Carroll, 16 saves. Burnt Hills, Manning, 7 stops.
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