Gavin Gregorek and Shoreham-Wading River faced the daunting task of climbing out of a five-goal hole against one of the Island’s top teams.
They responded with an offensive explosion that kept their season going.
Gregorek scored four goals as part of a seven-goal run to lead Shoreham-Wading River to a 13-12 win over Cold Spring Harbor in the Long Island Class C championship Saturday afternoon at Hofstra’s Shuart Stadium. Tyler Schwarz scored with 4:48 remaining to break a tie at 11 before Gregorek scored about two minutes later to extend Shoreham’s lead to 13-11.
Alex Moynihan brought Cold Spring Harbor back within a goal at the 2:40 mark, but the Wildcats defense held on to preserve the win. They will play Rye in a state semifinal at 4 p.m. Wednesday at Adelphi.
“The team felt positive coming into the second half,” Gregorek said. “Our coach said, ‘keep your heads up, we’re still in this.’ And that was our mindset.”
“This shows what we’re all about,” added Xavier Arline, who had two goals and three assists. “Being down five and being able to dig deep when things aren’t looking so good really shows what kind of players we have and what kind of coaches we have.”
Shoreham-Wading River (16-3) trailed 11-6 later in the third quarter, before Gavin’s brother Alec netted his third goal with 2:43 left in the period. Gavin himself then went a personal 3-0 run between the 2:02 mark in the third quarter and the 6:09 mark in the fourth, before John Erb scored to tie the score less than a minute later.
“With our offense, we know we could score however many goals in any amount of time,” said Dominick Visintin, who assisted Gregorek’s final goal and had two goals and three assists.
“Lacrosse is a game of runs,” Arline said. “When you get punched in the face, you have to throw a punch back. We started throwing consecutive punches and you just feel that knockout coming. You feel that energy.”
Peter Licciardi had four goals and two assists for Cold Spring Harbor (14-5), and teammate Danny Striano had three goals and an assist.
After converting on four of their 15 shots in the first half, Shoreham-Wading River scored on nine of its 13 attempts in the second. Strong ball movement helped key this turnaround and Gregorek was the prime beneficiary.
“Gavin plays like this all the time,” Visintin said. “He’s a great off the ball guy and he can finish from anywhere. He steps up huge in the biggest moments.”