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MKA's Dominic Romeo (left) looks to make his move as St. Peter's Prep's Tracy Bowers defends him during Wednesday's season-opening Waterman Division boys lacrosse action in Montclair. The Marauders roared to 8-4 victory over Cougars. (Photo by Gene Nann-nannphoto)
It's Welcome Back To Waterman Division
As St. Peter’s Prep Edges MKA In Opener
By Steve Tober
MONTCLAIR- The powers that be who arrange the divisions in New Jersey high school lacrosse decided to move St. Peter’s Prep back into the Waterman Division along with Mendham as Columbia and Livingston departed and the result is simply more day-to-day battles for those who have been there all along, including a young and reloading Montclair Kimberley Academy which knows that games like Wednesday’s season-opener vs. a physical and explosive Marauders lax squad will probably be part and parcel of life in the highly-competitive Waterman.
Montclair resident Will Vespole, whose brother Drew plays for Montclair High School, snapped a 3-3 tie with a hard shot with 6:15 left in the third quarter to propel St. Peter’s Prep to an 8-4 victory over the Cougars on a cold and sunny afternoon at Van Brunt Field.
With teams such as Caldwell, Madison, Morristown and Morristown-Beard also in the Waterman, and closely-contested, season-opening results such as Mendham’s 8-7 win over Morristown and Madison's narrow 5-4 triumph over Caldwell simply provide more evidence of just how competitive the division will be as every game promises to be a physical and demanding challenge.
If Wednesday’s opener in Montclair was any indication then St. Peter’s Prep, a former member of the Waterman who won the Bianchi-East division last spring, will almost certainly be a huge factor in the loop this spring.
Boasting one of North Jersey’s top goalies in Holy Cross-bound Peter Dobbs of Chatham (12 saves vs. MKA), explosive attackers like Vespole and freshman prospect Andrew Williams (2 goals vs. MKA) and a sturdy defense led by standout Andrew Siracuse, the Marauders are certainly going to be a tough handle for anyone in the Waterman.
“They have a good goalie, they’re tough on ground balls and have a couple of quick offensive players,” said MKA’s 15 th-year head coach Paul Edwards. “It’s always a good, physical game with them and I thought our kids responded well to that.
“We went to a zone in the second half and they identified some matchups which was why they had some possessions that were a little longer. I thought our goalie (Alex Melitz) did a real good job. We’re young, but we have some talent. We just need to get our confidence level up.
“The one thing is we may be inexperienced now but we’ll be expereicned very quickly with the schedule we’re facing.”
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