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Rams Defeat Hempstead, 12-10

In a hard-fought victory that saw Clarke high school varsity boys lacrosse pull out ahead of their opponents early on and remain there for the entire of the game, the Rams took out the Hempstead Tigers on last Wednesday, 12-10.

Hosted at Hempstead High school, the Rams, who have been otherwise experiencing a rough season thus far, nailed their first goal of the match at 11:03 and proceeded to control the game from there on out. By halftime, Clarke was boasting a decisive 6-2 lead. 


But once the third quarter began, the Tigers showed greater resolve and intensity, and Clarke’s lead soon began to gradually diminish. But despite their best efforts, Hempstead still proved no match for the hard work and determination of the Rams, who seized the well-earned victory with a final score of 12-10. 


The leaders on the scoreboard for the Rams were number 14, Pablo Villacorta, with four goals and one assist; number 23, Joe Weinberg, with three goals and one assist; number 27, T.J. Ciappi, with three goals and one assist; and number 12, Juan Gomez, and number 24, Anthony Mandracchia, each with one goal. In addition, number 36, Danny Cornell, provided two assists and number 25, Vince Caputo, had one. 


Clarke varsity lacrosse coach Rob Foley said that, despite the much-needed victory, his team’s performance in today’s game was a mix of both good and bad. 


“I feel that we played two good quarters and two weak quarters,” he said. “We more came down to their level and we didn’t play where we are capable of playing. That’s been our season...up and down, up and down, not playing a full four quarters.” 


However, Foley attributed the Rams’ rocky outing to the fact that much of the team is comprised of newcomers who are still learning the ins and outs of the game. 


“We’re very young and very inexperienced,” he said. “We only have four returning players from last year’s team, so we’re basically rebuilding from scratch. Our junior varsity team was very weak last year as’s a building year, and we’re just hoping that they learn from each game going forward.” 


At the start of the fourth quarter, play was temporarily suspended due to an injury suffered by number 15, Thomas Bellomo, that ultimately sidelined him for the remained of the game, and possibly for the rest of the season.

“It’s probably a broken collarbone, which he had broken previously earlier in the year,” Foley said said. “He probably broke it on a hit that he made...he broke it the first time in the fall playing hockey.” 


Goalie Francis Tabisola said that today’s win was a huge relief to the team, but admitted that the Rams almost let victory get away from them in the end.


“The game went really well. I think it was a big morale boost for everybody,” he said. “However, towards the end I think we started getting cocky and we didn’t really pick up our game. We need to step up our game next time.” 

Ciappi, however, was full of pride at the way the Rams controlled the field against Hempstead.


“It was probably our best game this season, offensively and defensively,” he said. “We play hard every game, but this game especially. We’ve had a rough season, but we came together this week at practice and we turned into a win.” 

The Clarke varsity lacrosse team’s win/loss record currently stands at 2-7.