Just a little more than a week after pulling off an overtime victory over Sayville to earn a home playoff game, the Westhampton Beach boys lacrosse team found itself on the losing end of the score against the Golden Flashes as the Hurricanes were ousted from the Suffolk County Class B playoffs with an 11-7 loss.
After finishing the season with an eight-game win streak, the Hurricanes earned the third seed in the playoffs with a 10-4 mark in Division II play, going 12-4, overall with 146.44 power points.
Sayville was the sixth seed (8-6 with 132.16 points) and will face second seed Huntington on May 23.
In the second-to-last game of the season, the Hurricanes squeaked out a 9-8 overtime win over Sayville, a victory that secured the team a home playoff game. In that game, the Hurricanes squandered a 7-4 second half lead but pulled out the win in overtime.
“The first game we played with them was a very close, good game,” Westhampton Beach coach Drew Peters said. “Sayville is one of the better teams every year so it helped us move up in the standings, which gave us the home game which is good for our kids and our program.
He continued, “But we knew beating them twice in a row in just more than a week would be tough. They played well that day and they outplayed us. They deserved to win.”
It was the second straight season the Hurricanes qualified for the postseason and the second straight season the team in green saw a first-round exit. In 2012, Westhampton Beach lost to Hauppauge after qualifying for the postseason for the first time since 2005.
Sayville scored less than two minutes into the game and with the exception of a nine-second span at the end of the first quarter when the score was tied at 1-1, the visitors controlled the scoreboard the entire game. Westhampton Beach managed to go goal-for-goal with its guest in the second half but it wasn’t enough to overcome a four-goal halftime deficit.
Connor O’Neil opened the scoring for Sayville less than two minutes into the game and the score remained at 1-0 until Pat Yager put the Hurricanes on the board on an assist from Jack Murphy with 1:22 to go in the first quarter.
The Golden Flashes quickly responded, scoring twice more before the end of the quarter as Spencer Andrews netted one just nine seconds after Yager’s goal and Brett Daigle, with his back to the net, poked one past goalie Brian Corrigan with eight seconds to go in the quarter for a 3-1 lead.
Murphy scored on an assist from Evan Gagne two minutes into the second quarter to cut the lead to one, but that was as close as the Hurricanes would get. Sayville added three more before the half for a 6-2 advantage.
The teams played even with five goals each in the second half for an 11-7 final. Corrigan, who occasionally comes out of the net to boost the offense, scored twice as did Casey Hickey, and Yager added one after the break.
“We got off to slow start, they made some plays, they stretched our defense,” Peters said. “They built themselves a lead and had a cushion and they were able to hold onto it for the remainder of the game.”
The loss brings to an end the careers of 16 members of the Westhampton Beach team. Having a core group of experienced players is part of the reason, according to coach Peters, his team was able to overcome a rough 2-4 start to win eight straight and earn a home playoff game.
“This season, in general, was a great season,” he said. “They showed their leadership and experience after the tough start. That’s something they can be proud of. A playoff win just wasn’t in the cards but I’m proud of these kids and hopefully some of the younger guys can learn from this season.”