EMIGSVILLE — There's little doubt that the Central York boys’ lacrosse team is a contender for the York-Adams League title.
The Panthers, however, are not the only team in that category. York Catholic, Red Lion, York Suburban, Eastern York, Susquehannock and Dallastown also fit that mold.
So, if Central wants to accomplish its goal of capturing the league title this spring, surviving a rugged early-season stretch will no doubt be a big factor.
The Panthers were able to remain on track Monday evening when they hosted defending Y-A League champion York Catholic. The home team dominated the second half, outscoring the visitors 7-2, to claim an impressive 17-10 triumph.
Central improved to 7-0 with the victory (6-0 in the York-Adams League), while York Catholic fell to 4-2 in the league and 4-3 overall.
“I think what we’re all focused on is winning a county championship,” Central’s Alex Kilgour said. “Last year we were in (the playoffs) and we lost in the first round to York Catholic. So tonight was a big win for us.”
The Panthers are in the midst of a difficult stretch against the cream of the crop in the Y-A League. Victories over three straight contenders in York Suburban, Red Lion and York Catholic set the stage for a fourth big showdown in a row.
“We have another big game Wednesday against Dallastown (5-0 in the league),” Kilgour said with a smile. “And then we have Susquehannock (next) Monday.”
Dallastown is ranked No. 1 in the District 3 Class 3-A power ratings, while Kilgour’s team is right behind them at No. 2.
If the Panthers remain unscathed through this stretch, they'll be in the driver's seat to take the regular-season crown. If they pull it off, it will no doubt be the result of a potent offense headlined by Kilgour. The Central junior finished with eight points (five goals, three assists) on Monday.
York Catholic coach Shane Harper understood that Kilgour is a dangerous player, but even his best efforts to contain the Panther standout proved futile.
“We talked about him all week,” Harper said. “Alex Kilgour is one of the best players in the county. We kept saying that we have to pole him and then we don’t. They switch him off or they sub him in when we have a short pole on him and I don’t believe that a short pole kid could handle Alex Kilgour. His shot is spot-on and his dodges are pretty awesome.”
Kilgour, however, is only part of what makes Central a handful for opposing defenses. T.J. Ross finished with six goals. while Kollin Vaught was again dominant in winning key face-offs.
“We had the upper hand against (Vaught) last year,” Harper said. “Drew Snellbaker, who was facing off against him again tonight, Drew handled him last year. But they flipped the script on us. Kollin was on his game today and they (Central) controlled the game. It was obvious and it could have been worse for sure.”
The Irish are also in the middle of a tough stretch after starting the season 4-0.
“I don’t think that anyone is taking us lightly,” Harper said. “We have some things to work on, be it with face-offs or taking our time on offense or playing more solid defense. But I think we’ll be right back where we were.”
Eli Doyle led York Catholic with six goals, while goalie Sam Shinsky finished with 14 saves.
Erik Mirkovich tallied seven saves in goal for Central.
West York 17, Kennard-Dale 3: At West York, Cameron Goodling led the Bulldogs by scoring five goals and adding one assist. Also for West York, Cody Richter had three goals and one assist, Jordan Billet had two goals and two assists, Nick Stough scored three goals and Dylan McCoy scored one goal and added three assists.
Susquehannock 13, South Western 12: At Hanover, the Warriors rallied from a three-goal deficit after three quarters to down the Mustangs. Adam Rebich led Susquehannock with five goals and three assists, while Jack Allred and Connor Kernan each tallied two goals.
York Suburban 20, Delone Catholic 6: At Suburban, Riley Purcell had five goals to lead Suburban, while Bryce Gavin added three goals and two assists and Dominc Corto tallied three goals and an assist.
Eastern York 22, Dover 7: At Wrightsville, Jimmy Kurnik led the Golden Knights by scoring seven goals and adding three assists. Also for Eastern, Dominick Particelli had six goals and four assists, Gavin Evans had two goals and one assist, Bryce Smith scored two goals, John Gilbert had one goal and two assists and Angel Maldonado and Bryce Henise each scored one goal and added one assist. For the Eagles, Cole Jesmer had three goals and one assist, Sean MacDonald scored two goals and Drew Shaffer scored one goal and added one assist.
Red Lion 9, Spring Grove 8: At Spring Grove, the Lions outscored the Rockets 3-1 in the final quarter to overcome a one-goal deficit. Sam Emig and Trevor Rider each scored three goals to pace the Red Lion attack. Dylan Griffiths and Tanner Bolton did all the scoring for Spring Grove, with Griffiths scoring five goals, while Bolton tallied three.
Red Lion 15, Spring Grove 14: At Red Lion, Alyssa Adams had five goals and an assist to lead Red Lion, while Peyton Shima added four goals and an assist. Spring Grove got six goals and an assist from Casey Franklin and five goals from Lauren Grove. Red Lion improved to 4-2-0 in the York-Adams League.
Kennard-Dale 19, West York 8: At Fawn Grove, Emmie Dressel had a monster performance for K-D, scoring four goals to go with five assists, while Maddie Day tallied five goals and Calie Swegon added four of her own. Sydney Sweitzer notched four of West York’s goals, while Chloe Smith added three. K-D improved to 4-0-1 in the York-Adams League.
Eastern York 12, Dover 7: At Dover, Kylie Nikolaus scored six goals in leading the Golden Knights. Brianna Pfeiffer added three more goals to the winning cause. Paige Lantz scored a pair of goals for the hosts. Eastern is 5-0-0 in the York-Adams League.
Susquehannock 21, South Western 3: At Glen Rock, Rachel Marshner and Emma Stiffler each had seven-point efforts for the Warriors. Marshner scored five goals and had two assists, while Stiffler recorded six assists and a goal. Susquehannock improved to 3-1-0 in the York-Adams League.
York Catholic 11, Central York 7: At York Catholic, Anna Linthicum scored three goals and added two assists in leading her team to victory. Sarah Mazzur also had three goals for the Irish. She recorded an assist as well. Abby McFarren scored three goals for the Panthers. York Catholic improved to 3-1-1 in the York-Adams League.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at firstname.lastname@example.org