Playing a man down in lacrosse is tough. It’s even tougher still when a high school team plays shorthanded for an entire 48-minute game.
That was the case for Bishop McGann-Mercy in its season opener on Wednesday. With one of the players from their 11-player roster out with an injury, the Monarchs had only 10 players on their own Harold T. Murray Memorial Field, and the result was predictable.
After hanging tough and trailing, 3-1, after one quarter, McGann-Mercy saw Port Jefferson’s numerical advantage take its toll. The Royals scored 13 unanswered goals for a 14-1 trouncing.
Brian Mark scored five goals from 14 shots and had two assists for Port Jefferson (1-2, 1-0 Suffolk County Division III), which also was powered by Chandler Sciara (four goals, one assist) and Taylor Chiarelli (three goals, two assists).
It was the varsity coaching debut for McGann-Mercy’s new coach, former Riverhead High School and Mercy College player Travis Baskin.
The Monarchs turned in a plucky effort against Port Jefferson, which had more than twice as many players.
Port Jefferson opened the scoring 1 minute 58 seconds into the game when Sciara finished off a quick exchange from Mark.
Liam Martin struck back for McGann-Mercy, evening the score at 3:20.
McGann-Mercy goalie Eddie Knight was stellar in the first quarter, when he made 12 of his 21 saves.
John Viola came up with a game-high nine ground balls for the Monarchs, who were outshot, 57-8, and held to two clears. Port Jefferson also held a clear advantage in ground balls, 38-18.
The Monarchs were reduced to nine players on the field for one minute when Billy Giglio was assessed a slashing penalty in the third quarter.
Photo caption: Bishop McGann-Mercy’s Sam Schrage scoops up a loose ball during his team’s season-opening loss to Port Jefferson. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)