Blazers surge past Wolverines in final moments for comeback win
After digging itself into a two-goal hole early on Wednesday night, the boys' varsity lacrosse team (6-4) pulled a stunning comeback victory against Watkins Mill (3-5), seizing the lead for the first time with less than two minutes remaining for a spectacular 7-6 win.
With the exception of a badly coordinated first quarter, the Blazers displayed an intensity that eventually overpowered Watkins Mill. Blair's concentrated offensive efforts were held in check by the Wolverines' highly aggressive defense, but Blair's similarly tight defensive play held the visitors from pulling away.
Helped along by the mistakes of an overeager Watkins Mill, the Blazers managed to pull ahead at the last minute. Entering the fourth quarter down 6-5, Blair rallied, establishing solid offensive dominance against the tiring Wolverines. Fast defensive recoveries by senior co-captain Andy Holmes and senior defenseman Jason Glasgow-Jackson were quickly re-routed towards Watkins Mill's goal. Seven minutes into the quarter, the Blazers hit gold, as senior co-captain Mike Mozer single-handedly brushed past a surprised Wolverine's defense to even the score, 6-6.
Afterwards, the Wolverines' physical style of defensive pressure became doubly aggressive, sandwiching Blazers between up to three defensemen at a time. These frenzied efforts resulted in penalty after penalty, giving the Blazers the breathing room needed to clinch the lead. With three players in the penalty box, Watkins Mill was finally overwhelmed by a Blair offensive drive with barely two minutes left in the quarter. Senior co-captain Eliot Gold provided the finishing touch, driving a shot past the Wolverines' net and securing Blair's 7-6 victory.
The stunning finish was necessary after a poorly-played first quarter. Although Blair managed to score 30 seconds into the game, Watkins Mill regained the goal a minute later. Offensively, the Blazers met stiff resistance from a Wolverines' defense that forced numerous turnovers. These caught Blair's middies by surprise, leading to several offensive rushes against an unprotected goalie. Before the quarter's end, the Wolverines found the back of the net three more times.
The magnitude of Blair's comeback made the game's final outcome all the more impressive. "We wanted it more at the end,” Holmes said. "Our offense played real hard at the last quarter. It was a good, solid win."
Head coach Bob Gibb agreed, adding that the win comes during a rough patch in the season. "Although we started slow, that was our best showing of the season," Gibb said. "We needed this win. We've had a couple tough losses."
The Blazers' next home game is Thursday, April 23 against Gaithersburg at 7 p.m.
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