Crusaders lacrosse beats the Bushmen for Section 9 title

Central Valley. The team now moves on to the first round of the New York State tournament this Saturday.

| 28 May 2024 | 04:43

On a beautiful Saturday afternoon, May 25, the Monroe-Woodbury Crusaders boys’ lacrosse team and the Bushmen of Pine Bush met at Faller Field in Middletown for the Section 9 Class A Championship. The Crusaders came into the game with a 10-6 record for the season after beating Kingston 16-9 in their semifinal match up. The #1 seeded Bushmen came in with a record of 15-2 after beating Valley Central 15-11 in their semifinal game. The Bushmen beat the Crusaders 10-6 when the two teams faced each other earlier in the season.

Isaac Cruz of Pine Bush came into the game with the reputation as one of the best lacrosse players in Orange County and he did not disappoint. Just :30 into the game he scored his first of his seven goals in the game to put the Bushmen up 1-0. Crusader Ryan Behringer tied the game back up before the Bushmen tied it up again. With :30 left in the first quarter, Carson Pesce scored, setting a tie at the end of the first 2-2.

In the second quarter, Cruz scored three more times to keep the Bushmen in the game. But goals by Liam Williamson and Pesce kept the Crusaders right with them. That’s when defensemen Brian Sullivan scooped up a ground ball and raced through the defense to score and put the Crusaders up 5-4. The Crusaders used the momentum to add goals by Max Weeks and John Gennaro as they took a 7-5 half time lead.

To start the second half, the Bushmen scored again, but the Crusaders responded by scoring three in a row, the first two by Behringer. Then came another momentum changing play when Dominick Cosenza won the face off cut past the Bushmen’s defense and scored to put the Crusaders up by four. The Crusaders held a 10-7 lead at the end of three quarters.

In the fourth quarter, Behringer scored two more of his four goals in the game and Weeks recorded his two, and with 4:50 left in the game, the Crusaders had a 13-8 lead. The Bushmen did not give up and fought to the end, scoring three more goals in a row to cut the lead down to two with 2:30 left in the game.

From there the Crusaders held on for a 13-11 victory and their second consecutive Section 9 title. The Crusaders will play in the first round of the New York State tournament on Saturday at Faller Field.