Lynbrook's Jack LaBarbera is triple teamed during a Nassau Conference...

Lynbrook's Jack LaBarbera is triple teamed during a Nassau Conference C/D boys lacrosse game against host Floral Park on Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Credit: Peter Frutkoff

The on-target shot came from about 11 yards away in the middle of the field, but Jack LaBarbera wasn’t enjoying his large goal at that moment. He was down on Floral Park’s turf after taking a shot to the ribs in the process and getting the wind knocked out of him.

Lynbrook had seen its advantage sliced to two 30 seconds prior, but LaBarbera’s goal with 4:45 left, in his words, “kind of turned the momentum in our favor.”

Soon the junior midfielder could enjoy the end result. LaBarbera contributed three goals and two assists, and the Owls held on for an impressive 11-8, Nassau C/D boys lacrosse win Tuesday over a team that had dropped just one game all season.

“We needed this one,” said Bill Leighley, who guided the Owls with fellow assistant coach Keith Lizzi because head coach Bill Luzzi was away in Texas finalizing the adoption of a baby boy.

This victory followed one in triple overtime against Conference A-leading Oceanside.

Junior midfielder Luke Dantona said after his two-goal, three-assist effort against Floral Park that he thinks Lynbrook (8-7, 6-5) “can be a really dangerous team” in the postseason.

LaBarbera concurs.

“I think we’re going to be a team that no one’s expecting to do anything,” LaBarbera said. “We’re going to be a team that knocks guys off (in games) that we aren’t expected to win.”

The Knights started the fourth with a three-goal burst, shrinking Lynbrook’s lead to 9-7. Steven Baranoski, a junior attackman who earlier posted his 100th varsity goal, scored his third, Ben Meighan delivered his second of three and James Gorman contributed his second.

But LaBarbera countered with his third. Then Derek Sandorfi scored his second — 11-7.

Back in the third, Dantona and Michael Hendrickson each scored their second goal, making it 9-4. That capped a run of six straight Owls goals that began 2:35 into the second quarter.

“I think our offense is really coming together,” Dantona said.

So Floral Park, a 5-12 team in 2023, fell to 12-2, 8-2.

“Our goal is to make it to Hofstra,” coach Matt Povolny said, referencing the home of Nassau’s semis and finals. “It’s the same group that we’ve had the last three years in terms of the key contributors. I think the improvement is a credit to their hard work in the winter and the offseason and sticking together.”


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