by Danny Kuhn
The WHS boys lacrosse team suffered a painful loss in an epic overtime battle against Ridgewood High School this Saturday by a final score of 11-10
Westfield got off to a sluggish start in the beginning of the game, and Ridgewood capitalized on this with a relentless attack. Junior Luke Prybylski scored the first goal of the game, but Ridgewood answered back with a long 5-0 run with 6:50 left in the first half.
Senior Jackson Boyle helped cut the lead with a diving shot that flew into the top left corner of the goal, and an assist to senior Chris Aslanian to bring the score 5-3 with 5 minutes remaining in the half. However, Ridgewood went on another run and was leading 8-3 in the beginning of the second half.
Prybylski played a key role in Westfield’s comeback, scoring 2 goals and an assist to Aslanian off a spin move in a two-minute stretch during the third quarter. With fewer than four minutes to go in the second half, WHS was trailing 9-8. But the Westfield boys were too aggressive in their attempt to regain possession and committed two penalties which left Westfield two men down for a short period of time. Ridgewood took advantage of the situation they had on the field and scored with three minutes left in the game.
With less than a minute to go, it seemed that Westfield was done for. However, Senior Andrew Capuano scored with 19.5 seconds left in the game to reduce Ridgewood’s lead to one goal. Senior Jack Kessler won the faceoff to give Westfield the possession with time winding down. In a desperate attempt to get a shot on goal, Capuano got one last look with less than 2 seconds left in the game and was able to bounce a shot over the goalie’s outstretched hands.
Capuano said: “I just happened to be open twice in the last 40 seconds. I was completely shocked after the second goal, and it was an unbelievable feeling. It was really my teammates that did the work and made the right moves in order to get me the ball for those shots.”
Although Westfield gained momentum going into overtime, Ridgewood once again bounced back by scoring the winning goal in the third minute of extra time.
Senior Tri-Captain Chris Aslanian said: “I think we did a great job of battling back from a big deficit. Our team showed a lot of fight and heart, and I was proud of how we never gave up. It was a tough loss, but we look to continue to get better each and every day and finish off our regular season strong.”