George Schultz (7 goals), Ryan Keenan (7 assists) pace Smithtown West
Sachem North had just hampered Smithtown West's momentum, coming within two goals in the final minute of a first quarter mostly dominated by the host Bulls.
Smithtown West, though, won the ensuing faceoff, and the Bulls' coaches were yelling "Yellow, yellow," from the sideline, telling their team to slow things down and set up one more offensive-zone possession before the end of the quarter.
"We didn't really listen to that," attack George Schultz said. "Sometimes you have to play outside the box."
With 27.8 seconds left in the period, Schultz was the middle man in a five-person tic-tac-toe transition rush that resulted in a Patrick O'Brien goal off a touch pass from Ryan Keenan, giving the momentum back to the Bulls to ride all the way to the final horn in a commanding 18-8 victory over Sachem North in Division I boys lacrosse Saturday.
"We like to move the ball very quickly and we obviously did that today," O'Brien said. "That play was really cool, it was a great team effort . . . We were just doing our thing."
The setup gave Smithtown West a 6-3 lead after the first, and propelled the squad to a 13-5 halftime advantage. The Bulls closed the half on a 4-0 run, capped by Joseph Varello with 1:49 left in the second when he won a faceoff at midfield, charged the net and scored his second goal of the game.
"We always preach to the kids to push the ball, so it's nice when that translates into the game and they executed and it looked pretty," Smithtown West coach Bobby Moltisanti said. "We think we played our best offensive game of the season today and it was fun to watch."
Smithtown West (10-2) piled it on in the third, capitalizing on a two-minute man-advantage after a Sachem North (7-5) penalty that produced two goals and a quick third at even strength to make it 17-6, and 18-7 heading into the fourth.
The Schultz-Keenan connection was the driving force behind Smithtown West's prolific offense.
Six of Schultz's game-high seven goals were off assists from Keenan, who finished with a game-high seven assists.
"Whenever Ryan gets the ball, I know I have to move right away because I know he's going to beat his guy every time and try to find me," Schultz said. "I have to give all the credit to him."
Said Keenan: "I just know where he is all the time at the crease. Sometimes I don't even look and I know he's there to finish it every time."