On a frigid, rainy Tuesday afternoon, the Rye lacrosse team stayed hot, trouncing Somers 11-5 at home to win their second straight game to start the season.
Although the 2018 campaign may still be in its infancy, the Garnets have shown flashes of brilliance and look to continue their strong play heading into a stretch that sees them take on some of the area’s top teams.
Dennis Kennelly led the offense with three goals while Billy McLaughlin and Peter Chabot contributed two apiece on April 3, as the Garnets’ varied attack was on full display. In their two games this season, including a 12-6 win against Shenendehowa on March 29, the Garnets have twice scored in the double-digits without relying too heavily on any one player to shoulder the offensive load.
“Balance is something we preach,” Rye head coach Steve Lennon said. “Whoever is going good can lead us and we’re really excited about that.”
Defensively, the Garnets allowed just 15 shots, something Lennon attributes to the ability of his players to stick with their marks.
“We’ve got a bunch of guys we can trust; obviously we slide when we have to but we were able to stick with guys and we didn’t have to slide that much which opens things up,” he said. “And when we’re aggressive on defense, we tend to do a lot better.”
The head coach was especially proud of the way his team was able to battle the elements on Tuesday. With temperatures hovering around the low 40’s and driving rain falling for much of the first half, the Garnets had to abandon a run-and-gun style in favor of a more control-oriented attack.
“We tried to slow it down a little bit, playing in that half court style,” Lennon said. “It kind of slowed us down but we were able to make the most of a few fastbreaks overall.”
The Garnets will be back in action on April 5 when they host Lourdes. They will follow that up with a string of tough contests against Pelham, Riverdale and Mamaroneck. Despite his team’s strong play in the first two games, Lennon is confident that the team will not rest on its laurels.
“I’d like to see our shooting angles get better and our shooting percentage increase,” he said. “I think we can be scoring 15 goals a game. We’re going to be running the gauntlet in the next three weeks against some really good teams, so we’re just going to keep grinding each day.”