NYS semis preview: Bronxville vs. SWR
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NYS CLASS C BOYS LAX SEMIFINALS
Matchup: Bronxville (Section 1) vs. Shoreham-Wading River (Section 11)
Venue: Hofstra University
Date/time: June 6, 3:30 p.m.
What's next: NYS finals on June 9 at Middletown's Faller Field at 11 a.m.
Where to watch: The game will be streamed LIVE on MSGVarsity.com and rebroadcasted June 10 on MSG Varsity iO ch 14 at noon
* No. 3 in the latest MSG Varsity WE/HV Boys Lax Power Rankings
* Best win: 18-12 over Somers on 5/14
* Total number of state titles: Zero
Shoreham-Wading River (16-3)
* No. 12 in the latest MSG Varsity Tri-State Lacrosse Top 20
* Best win: 12-7 over Comsewogue on 4/24
* Total number of state titles: Two ('02, '07)
Goals a game average: Shoreham-Wading River (10.11) | Bronxville (12.81)
Goals against average: Shoreham-Wading River (6.26) | Bronxville (5.0)
THREE PLAYERS TO WATCH ON BRONXVILLE
* Jack Grass (Jr., A) — Hopkins-bound All-American leads Bronxville in scoring with 99 points on 54 goals and 45 assists.
* Henry Grass (Fr., A) — This isn't your average freshman. Henry Grass has the size, skill and poise of a veteran. He's second on the Broncos in scoring with 86 points (50G, 36A).
* Brewster Warble (Jr., MF) — Brown-bound middie can fly in transition and has ripped a team-high 67 goals this year.
THREE PLAYERS TO WATCH ON SHOREHAM-WADING RIVER
* Tim Rotanz (Jr., A) — Maryland-bound superstar leads the Wildcats in scoring with 81 points (42G, 39A).
* Trevor Brosco (Sr., MF) — Notre Dame-bound senior is SWR's most dangerous middie, totaling a team-high 44 goals to go with 17 assists.
* Tyler Lutjen (Sr., G) — Siena-bound goalie spearheads the Wildcats' zone defense and has 175 saves on the year.
THE SKINNY ON BRONXVILLE
This is the second straight year the Broncos have made the state semifinals, so they will be better prepared for the moment this time around. As a result, they head into the Long Island showdown feeling confident and prepared.
"We got there last year and we are pretty psyched to get back," freshman attackman Henry Grass said after Bronxville dispatched of Glens Falls in the regional finals. "We have to get by those guys. Long island will be a tough obstacle, but I think we can do it this year. We are a lot stronger and have a lot of experience under our belt."
More importantly, Bronxville has a lot more weapons than last year's team, which leaned heavily on the All-American duo of Charlie McCormick (Georgetown) and Jack Near (Notre Dame). In 2012, there are a bevy of capable options in the Grass brothers, Warble, Reilly Walsh, Matt Behrens and Gibbs Lilly.
In terms of matching up against SWR, Warble could play the biggest role. The Wildcats run a pretty stingy zone defense and limit prime scoring opportunities in six-on-six situations. Look for Warble to utilize his legs and create offense in transition.
Faceoff specialist Andrew Walsh will be another big piece to the upset puzzle. He proved his worth in the Section 1 finals against Hen Hud, going 11 for 22 against Johns Hopkins-bound FOGO Matt Ledwin. In what figures to be more of a low-scoring battle, faceoffs usually determine the winner and loser.
Defensively, the Broncos will be hard-pressed to matchup one-on-one with Rotanz. It will take a total team defensive effort — with plenty of shading and early slides — to shutdown the All-American.
THE SKINNY ON SHOREHAM-WADING RIVER
As stated before, the Wildcats run a zone defense, which is built around bruising Ohio State-bound defenseman Charlie Mahoney (6-3, 215 pounds) and steady goalie Tyler Lutjen. If SWR forces Bronxville into mainly long-range shots, the Broncos will have trouble scoring.
Offensively, SWR revolves around the Maryland-bound Rotanz, who began his varsity career as an eighth-grader and already has 299 career points. Rotanz is a playmaker in the truest sense of the word, possessing both elite vision and finishing skills.
Brosco is the Wildcats' most dangerous finisher. If the Notre Dame-bound middie gets his hands free, there's a good chance his 90-plus MPH shot will find the back of the net. Not to mention, he's been a force in the playoffs with 13 goals in just three games.
Overall, SWR has to be considered a solid favorite. The Wildcats have a real shot of capturing the program's third state title.
Email Isaac Cass at Icass@cablevision.com | Follow him on Twitter @MSGV_Icass