The disappointed reaction from the York Suburban boys' lacrosse team was evident when the players hung their heads on a windy but sunny Tuesday afternoon at West York.
The Trojans had just lost, 9-5, to the host Bulldogs. Yet, there was third-year Suburban coach Scott Toman going around to each individual player to slap hands and tap helmets and let them know his thoughts.
"Great job guys. It's only one loss. We didn't come all this way to be upset with one loss," Toman said to his team.
Just once in the program's short history has Suburban finished with a winning record in York-Adams League competition, when the 2010 Trojans went 9-4. But there were the 2014 Trojans on Tuesday afternoon at the home field of the traditionally strong West York lacrosse team, both entering with undefeated league records. With the loss, Suburban dropped to 5-1 in Division II while West York (7-0 league) took over sole possession of first place atop the division.
But the Trojans, who feature just four starting seniors, proved their 5-0 start in league competition wasn't a fluke by hanging with a talented Bulldogs squad until the final minutes.
"We've come over here for several years in a row and really got it handed to us," Toman said. "So we respect their program. Hopefully we earned a little bit of their respect today. It's tough. I told the guys 'we still got a lot of games to go. The season is not over. It's only one loss.' We get to see them again at our place and hopefully we do a better job and play a cleaner game and the outcome will be a little different."
Penalties hurt Suburban in the first half, when West York opened up a 6-2 advantage going into halftime.
"We had a lot of stupid penalties. At one point it was 6-on-3. We got some dumb slashes and that hurt us," Toman said. "They took advantage. Good teams will take advantage of those (opportunities) and that's what happened."
The Trojans responded in the second half, cutting the deficit to 7-4 after three quarters and 7-5 with 8:28 remaining.
"We got down early but I was just glad that they fought back. We crawled within two and then gave up two more at the end and we were trying to press out a little bit because we needed to get the ball," Toman said. "Again, a good team will take advantage of it."
NCAA Division III Delaware Valley recruit Seth Clauser (four goals, one assist) paced the West York offense alongside teammates Hunter Betz (one goal, four assists) and Devyn Roehm (two goals, assist). Bulldogs senior goalie Jordan Lombardo, who is a D-II Lees McRae (N.C.) College recruit, played a solid game in the net by making 13 stops. West York outshot Suburban, 27-20.
Foster Hoyt led the Suburban attack with three goals. Toman, who is originally from Allentown and moved to York County 10 years ago to work for a local insurance company, said Tuesday was his team's biggest test of the year thus far. The schedule won't get any easier for Suburban, though. The Trojans next face strong teams in Eastern York, Dallastown and Central York.
OTHER BOYS' LACROSSE
Central York 18, Spring Grove 8: At Central, the Panthers improved to 6-0 both overall and in York-Adams Division I. Max Haldeman (six goals, five assists), Katon Yantek (four goals, two assists), Ian Desenberg (four goals, assist) and Collin George (two goals, two assists) led the Panthers. Spring Grove was paced by Trey Baker (three goals, two assists).
York Catholic 12, Kennard-Dale 11: At Fawn Grove, the visitors won behind four goals from Brad Rosenzweig. Tom Bowser (three goals), Ted Trapeni (two goals, assist), Jacob Norton (three assists) and Luke Brennan (two goals) also excelled for the Irish. Jesse Schonbrunner scored six goals for K-D, while Robert Seitz had two goals and an assist.
— Reach John Walk at email@example.com.