The 15th-seeded Blue Knights lacrosse team traveled to No. 2 Simsbury on Wednesday, June 1 to meet up with the Trojans for the third time this season. Southington’s season came to an end with a 10-1 loss in the first round.
Southington lost to Simsbury, 10-3, in the semifinals of the CCC Central tournament a couple weeks earlier. The Trojans eventually went on to claim the divisional title.
On Wednesday, Sims-bury scored four goals in the opening quarter of play, adding a pair of goals in the second quarter to head into halftime with a 6-0 lead.
Chris Pestillo mustered Southington’s only goal of the game in the fourth quarter. Brandon Porter saved 17 shots in the cage for the Knights. Simsbury outshot Southington, 27-10.
“Going in having to play the same team three times is always difficult to do, especially when you’ve lost to them the last two times,” said Southington coach Ron Chase. “We had a couple good practices beforehand, but we let a number of goals in early, which kind of sealed our fate.”
Although there were some losses that Chase said he wished he could have had back. However, Chase also said that it was still a good season, all around, considering that they had lost three varsity starters towards the end of the regular season. The Knights missed the postseason last year with a 4-12 record, improving to 9-7 by the end of 2016 regular season.
“It’s a good season for any team to get at least one win in the playoffs,” the coach said. “When you lose three offensive players to that magnitude, it hurts. But, the guys who filled in did a great job. They did what we needed them to do. Down the stretch, they had some big goals that we needed. We had some depth this year, which is normally not the case.”
Chase said by having those younger players start in the varsity lineup gave them a lot of experience towards next year.
“At one point against Simsbury and Fairfield Warde, we had like four or five freshmen and sophomores running around out there,” said Chase. “That’s something to build on for the future. When those guys come in with the desire and ability to play at this level, it helps us for the future.”