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St. Anthony's ready for Jersey rival Delbarton
Before the season, St. Anthony’s boys lacrosse coach Keith Wieczorek said the team would have a bit of a different feel to it this year because he believed his players would have to create offensive opportunities.
In past years, St. Anthony’s didn’t need much creativity. Sheer talent was enough, evidenced by four straight CHSAA championships. And it’s not as if they’ve been getting shut down in 2013 — the Friars (4-0) average more than 10 goals a game — but, still, Wieczorek would like more.
“We’re not lighting up the scoreboard, but I wasn’t expecting us to,” he said. “We’re not shooting well and that’s going to be our Achilles heel. We got to start finishing more on the offensive end. We’re not clicking on all cylinders.”
Saturday’s 1 p.m. home game against New Jersey powerhouse Delbarton (1-0) puts the Friars up against a team with one of the best faceoff specialists in the country: Austin Williams.
“He’s a game-changing type of guy. He’s going to Harvard and he’s absolutely tremendous,” Wieczorek said. “If they dominate time of possession, then that can hurt us.”
In the New Jersey state semifinals last May against Don Bosco Prep, Delbarton overcame a four-point deficit with two minutes left to win 9-8, and a lot had to do with Williams winning every faceoff during that span.
With Williams, Delbarton has a strong chance at controlling the ball during the game, limiting scoring opportunities for St. Anthony’s.
Wieczorek said a good early surprise has been the play of his own faceoff specialist, Michael Buscemi. St. Anthony’s will look for Dylan Molloy to facilitate the offense and make the most out of possessions.
“Dylan Molloy has been as advertised,” Wieczorek said. “He’s been our rock as far as stabilizing our offense and distributing the ball. Even if he’s not scoring, he’s the one causing those goals to happen.”
The Friars play at a high tempo and like to score in transition but have been susceptible to turnovers -- including eight in a 8-7 win over St. John the Baptist on Thursday.
Another player who may factor into the game is goalie Anthony Delosreyes, who recorded 10 saves Thursday.
St. Anthony’s defeated Delbarton last year in what has become an annual matchup of regional powers.
“Neither team is too far ahead or away in these games," Wieczorek said. "It’s two really good programs.”