Garden City edges Calhoun for title


Calhoun’s Jake Lewis already had a hat trick including a pair of highlight-reel goals in Tuesday night’s Nassau Class B boys’ lacrosse championship game when he made a last-second move towards the Garden City cage with visions of forcing overtime.

After weaving his way around the defense once again, Lewis attempted a leaping shot that appeared to find its way over the goal line but a crease violation preceded the attempt and the Trojans escaped with a hard-fought 7-6 victory at Hofstra for their third straight county title and 15th since 2000.

Top-seeded Garden City, which defeated the Colts handily, 16-8, April 21, had its hands full this time and got the decisive goal with 1:48 remaining in regulation off the stick of Carson Kraus. The Trojans, who advanced to face West Islip for the Long Island Class B crown Saturday at Stony Brook University, played a man down over the final 40 seconds.

“These are the moments you play for and we had 19 seniors that never wanted this season to end,” Calhoun coach Jim Femminella said. “We came in a much better team than we were six weeks ago when we last saw them. We were very confident in our game plan and the kids really battled. It was a big step up from when we reached the finals last year. We weren’t afraid.”

The Colts, who lost last year’s county championship game to Garden City by a 12-5 margin, led Tuesday’s rematch for much of the first half and received a huge effort between the pipes from junior goaltender Mark Restivo, who made 12 saves. Senior Jayden Findelstein scored twice and senior A.J. Molinari, who missed last Friday’s semifinal win over South Side win an injury, suited up and added a goal.

Lewis’ first goal of the night gave Calhoun a 3-2 lead just 24 seconds into the second quarter. Finkelstein’s second made it 4-2, but Garden City answered with a James Paisley goal just before halftime.

The Trojans tied it early in the third on Stevie Finnell’s second tally and led for the first time, 5-4, with 8:58 remaining in the quarter on Paisley’s second of the game. Lewis made it 5-5 with 3:04 left when he plowed through the entire defense and beat goalie Denis Fargione.

Calhoun trailed 6-5 midway through the fourth when Lewis did the same, breaking through multiple defenders to create the fifth and final deadlock of the night. Fargione made two tremendous stops in crunch time — one on the doorstep with three minutes to go and the other during the late delayed penalty.

Andrew Ottomanell added two goals for Garden City. “Calhoun is a tough team and they brought their best game,” Fargione said. “We knew they would come to play and we needed to work hard to win.”