Vista boys' lacrosse making progress in year twoBy: Matt Long, Sports Editor
Vista’s second-year lacrosse program is progressing nicely.
The Eagles enter this week with a 5-4 record, including a 3-3 mark in league play. Things have gone as coach Mike Messersmith figured they would. The Eagles have beaten the teams Messersmith felt they should have beaten (Cardinal Newman, Christian Brothers (twice), Bella Vista, and Lincoln), while losing to area powers Jesuit, Granite Bay, Casa Grande and Davis).
“The season is going well,” Messersmith said. “We haven’t played a close game. The games we’ve won, we’ve won big, and unfortunately the games we’ve lost weren’t too close. We were close to Jesuit at halftime, but they really came on in the second half and beat us pretty good. After three quarters against Granite Bay we were only down two, but they had a great fourth quarter. We’ve had a hard time finishing games. We’re not that deep and we get worn down.”
After the team’s first shutout in their short history on April 10, a 15-0 win over Christian Brothers, Vista played host to a strong Davis team Friday and lost 14-3. The highlight of the night was the very start when the Eagles gained possession and Daniel Dias scored the first goal of the game. The Blue Devils answered with seven straight goals to take a 7-1 lead and Vista never challenged, though they did play hard to the very end of the game.
Gage Garfield and Jason Sanfilippo scored the other two goals, while keeper Jacob Rodkiewicz did all he could in goal, as the Blue Devils hurt the Eagles with a strong transition game.
“Davis has a very good goalie or this would have been a much closer game,” Messersmith said. “We had our looks, but had trouble finishing. We played hard to the end. The game felt closer than it was.”
The Eagles are led this year by Rodkiewicz in goal, who’s the backbone of the team and keeps them in games, according to Messersmith. Sophomore defender Will Carrera, junior attack Jackson Waugh, senior midfielder Pat Snyder and sophomore midfielder Mitchell Northcutt are leaders at their positions.
“We’re making progress, Carrera said. “We’ve got a bunch of great guys and we’ve shown our perseverance.”
The goal this season is a playoff berth. Having already suffering league losses to Jesuit, Granite Bay and Davis, the Eagles need a big win Tuesday against Oak Ridge to improve their chances of qualifying for the postseason.
“We’re making progress, even if it’s not as fast as I would like,” Messersmith said. “If we play our best, I’m happy win or lose.”
After hosting Oak Ridge on Tuesday, Vista hits the road to play in Stockton Friday against St. Mary’s.