Will Sands leads Friends Academy to first county title

Jake Gennosa of Cold Spring Harbor plays tight

Jake Gennosa of Cold Spring Harbor plays tight defense against Liam Kearney of Friends Academy. (May 28, 2013) (Credit: Bob Sorensen)

Will Sands' dream came true Tuesday night.

One that the Friends Academy junior attack said he's been wishing for since his days in junior high school.

For the first time in program history, the second-seeded Friends Academy boys lacrosse team captured a county championship, defeating No. 1 Cold Spring Harbor, 9-4, at Hofstra's Shuart Stadium for the Nassau Class C title. It was Friends' first win against CSH since 1995.

"It's the greatest feeling in the world," Sands, a captain who has played on the team since eighth grade, said after scoring three goals and assisting on four others. "They knock us off every year so it was a little payback. They're a great team but we just played with so much heart today."

CSH won the last two county titles, but now it's Friends' turn to represent Nassau in the Long Island Class C final, Saturday at Stony Brook at 4:30 p.m., against Shoreham-Wading River.

Friends Academy (14-2) started its historic win by scoring two goals in the first quarter and holding a high-powered CSH offense scoreless. After the Seahawks needed just 41 seconds in the second quarter to tie it up, Sands assisted on a goal by Tyler Tam just before the buzzer sounded at the end of the first half to make it 3-2.

The third quarter ended in almost identical fashion. After CSH (13-4) scored twice to take its only lead, Sands assisted on consecutive goals inside the period's final two minutes, including a feed to Pierce DellaFera just as the buzzer sounded.

"He's one player that makes us the offense that we are," coach Brian Crocco said of Sands. "I'm super-proud of his ability to share the ball, especially today."

As Sands (goal, two assists in fourth) dominated on offense, goalie Chre Teitelbaum made 11 saves, including three as he shut out CSH in the fourth.

"I never doubted us," Teitelbaum said. "It's just an unbelievable feeling."

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