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Jim Byrns scores six goals to lead Massapequa lacrosse to victory

Massapequa's Jim Byrns, right, shoots against Syosset in

Massapequa's Jim Byrns, right, shoots against Syosset in a Nassau boys lacrosse game on Tuesday, April 22, 2014. Credit: Richard T. Slattery

Jim Byrns' football season was wiped out after he tore his ACL in the opener. The injury carried over to the spring and prevented him from playing in Massapequa's first two lacrosse games. When he returned to the field a few weeks ago, he wore a black brace, but was hardly slowed down.

The thing is, though, there isn't much that can stop Byrns from finding the back of the net lately.

Syosset learned that Tuesday.

Byrns scored six goals, including five of his team's first eight points, as host Massapequa defeated Syosset, 18-7, in Nassau Conference A.

"He's coming back to where he was last year now, finding his niche out there and always finding the right spots at the right time," coach Tim Radomski said of Byrns, who scored 61 goals last year.

"I score a lot of goals, but they're set up by my teammates all the time," said Byrns, humble to a fault. "I think it's also about how well we're coached because without them, this wouldn't happen."

Ian Kirby added three goals and three assists. Momentum was secured early by Massapequa, which never trailed and led 7-2 at the half.

Byrns and Kirby took turns notching pretty scores throughout the match. Byrns, while smothered by defenders, bounced in a goal into an empty net from 40 yards with 5:29 left in the second quarter.

Kirby went top shelf from close range off an assist from Carter Hawthorne midway through the third quarter to give the Chiefs an 11-3 lead at the time.

"I just like to put myself in a mind-set where I can be mad all the time," Kirby said. "That motivates me."

Paul Dilena had two goals and two assists and Ryan Tierney scored twice for Massapequa (5-0). Syosset is 4-1.

Matt Valdini, who had nine saves, continued to prove reliable in net for the Chiefs, who were also led by defensive stalwarts Matt Caracappa, Nick Capuana, Jack Korber and Nick Balzano.

"They all play physical and just want to be the best group out there defensively," Radomski said.

Massapequa's biggest strength, however, is likely its offense, especially because Byrns said that despite some soreness, he's feeling healthy these days.

"We just keep growing together as players," said Kirby, who assisted on two of Byrns' goals. "I couldn't ask for anyone else to be with on this field."

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