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St. Anthony’s beats Chaminade in Instant Classic for 2019 Parochial AA Championship

This game was an instant classic between two of the biggest rivals in high school lacrosse. This game had a friday night lights high school football type of atmosphere. The stands were packed and everybody was on their feet for the entire game to see two of the best high school programs in the country. Both of these teams which are filled with division 1 talent,  put on a stellar performance, and if you watched this game, it was a game you will not forget. The first time around when these two teams played, Chaminade got the best of Friars, winning, 13-7. After St. Anthony’s lost to Chaminade, the Friars ran the table and won all of their games to finish out the regular season.

Coming off a tough loss to Delbarton, the Flyers came out fast and firey. Mike O’Connell jump started Chaminade driving to the cage to make it 1-0, followed by Kevin Pimental finding  Thomas Rogan cutting down the field to make it 2-0. Junior, Jake Naso had a wonderful game at the faceoff X. Capitalizing off of his face-off win in the first quarter by driving to the cage for the Friars first goal. Thomas Rogan would quickly strike again by scooping up a key groundball to give Chaminade a 3-1 lead. Then, Brennan O’Neil would start his historic day, finding Bobby McGee cutting down the middle of the field to trim Chaminade’s lead down to one. The lefty sniper would then roll dodge his defender and stick a shot top shelf to tie the game at 3. Rogan and Pimental had chemistry all day along, as this time Rogan would find Pimental for his first goal of the game to make it 4-3 Chaminade. O’Neil’s future Duke teammate, Aidan Danenza had a shot faster than lighting to tie the game at 4. Sophomore, Chris Kavanagh would then get his defense hung about the crease, freeing his hands and giving him a chance to find Mike O’Connelll to make 5-4. Following OC’s goal, Thomas Rogan scooped up yet again another pivotal ground ball and capitalized to make it 6-4. Chaminade would take control of the rest of the first half as John Devino would score on the run and jumped into his teammates arms to make it 7-5, followed by Riley Gray’s laser with 30 seconds left in the half to give Chaminade an 8-5 lead. St. Anthony’s would not go down quietly as the catalyst of the team, Jake Naso would continue to create offensive opportunities off of the faceoff X by finding John Rebuth to close out the half.   

Chaminade cleary won the first half behind the great play of stud goalie, Liam Entenmann, who made spectacular saves and was excellent clearing the ball. Like the first half, Chaminade set the tone in the second half. Chaminade did an excellent job on the ride as Kevin Pimental would cause a turnover and find Daniel Schafer for a goal making it 9-6. However, St. Anthony’s would not let this game get out of hand, as Sophomore, Andrew McAdorey would trim the lead down 2. Then, the Brennan O’Neil show began, and he put the team on his back. Brennan O’Neil cut the lead to 1, and then he would have capture the crowd and lacrosse fans world wide, by scoring one of sickest goals you will ever see, as he ripped a hole through the net to tie the game at 9! Aidan Danenza fed O’Neill for a 12+ yard step down shot, where O’Neill shot the ball low to high towards the far side of the cage. At first, the official thought it was a missed shot. Danenza and teammates were pointing at the net as if the ball went through it. Sure enough, after the near side official marched over to the cage, inspected the cage and recognized the massive hole, St. Anthony’s was awarded the goal.  

St. Anthony’s would continue their run with a goal by Jack Walshe, making it 10-9 with 3:55 left in the third. Rielly Gray would come flying down the middle of the field on an iso tying it at 10, followed by Michael O’Connell breaking the tie to make it 11-10, and then James Ball would make it 12-10. At this point, it looked like the game was getting away from the Friars. Brennan O’Neil would then have a jaw dropping behind the back goal that set the crowd in a frenzy, and getting his Friars within 1. Brennan O’Neil wasn’t done yet, as he then tied the game at 12 by putting the ball in the perfect spot for a goal. Chaminade would then take the lead again as Riley Gray found Kevin Pimental to give Chaminade a 13-12 lead with 5:00 mins left. Brennan O’Neil then tied the game at 13, rounding one of the greatest high school lacrosse performance we have ever seen. To cap it all off, Danny Parker would find Jake Bonomi, who backdoored his defender for a phenomenal BTB for the game winning goal! The final, 14-13 Friars.

St. Anthony’s takeaways

The three players that impressed me the most in this game for St. Anthony’s  is Jake Naso, Greg Campisi, and Brennan O’Neil. Big time players show up in big time games, and O’Neil did just that and showed why he was one of the best high school players in the country. O’Neill couldn’t have had a better game, and the scary fact for Long Island Lacrosse teams is that he’s only a Junior and he’s only going to get better. Jake Naso was pivotal in this game as he crushed it on the face off, and turned it up in the second half. Naso should be in the conversation when talking about the top FOGO’s on Long Island. Greg Campisi ended his high school career in a great way as he was all over the field, scooping up ground balls and he was a force to be reckoned with. Looking ahead to next year, this team might be the best team in Long Island, as they have starpower coming back in, Brennan O’Neil, Jake Naso, Aidan Danenza, Andrew McAdorey, and Jack Walshe.  A dynasty might be brewing in South Huntington.

Chaminade takeaways

Chaminade ran the table all season long, but they had one little hiccup. Chaminade is losing a lot of key players in, Roy Meyer, Kevin Pimental, Thomas Rogan, and Liam Entenmann. There’s no reason why all four of these players should not have success at the next level, especially Entenmann, who I think is a phenomenal goalkeeper, and will absolutely kill it at Notre Dame next spring. Entenman was excellent in this game finishing with 15 saves, and having a high success rate in the clearing game. Tom Rogan and Kevin Pimental have great chemistry together as they put up big numbers in this game, and they will be missed. They shouldn’t worry too much, as this program always reloads and they are very well coached.        


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