It’s a Long Island championship or bust for Massapequa. The Chiefs fell to Ward Melville, 8-5, in each of the last two Long Island boys lacrosse finals.
“It’s been sitting with us for a while and it’s all we think about, talk about. We aren’t satisfied with just playing in the LIC,” faceoff specialist Angelo Petrakis said. “And although it’s hard to keep Ward Melville off our minds, we understand we have a lot to do before that, and we have to do the little things right and get the mistakes out of the way.”
Massapequa, coached by Tim Radomski, first must get through the field in Nassau, and the Chiefs are well equipped to do so.
Petrakis, a 2018 All-Long Island selection, won 85 percent of his faceoffs (222 of 263) and registered a team-leading 115 ground balls as a junior captain in 2018. The Cornell commit also had 11 goals and eight assists, but his dominance at the X makes him the catalyst for the Massapequa offense, and his success often rubs off on teammates.
“[Angelo] gives us extreme confidence that we are most likely going to get the ball back after a score,” Garrett Gibbons, a senior midfielder, said. “And if he gets us the ball almost every time, then the least we can do is put it in the back of the net.”
Gibbons, a Maryland commit, had 18 goals and 18 assists last season while being among the team leaders in ground balls. Midfielder Thomas Greenblatt excels on both sides of the field, while Sam Lutfi and Colin Gleason lead the attack.
The Chiefs likely will split time with their goalies -- Joe Moran is an Air Force commit and Nick Squicciarini will play at LIU next season. Kenny Brower, a longstick heading to Duke next year, looks to be the leader of the defense after tearing his ACL in the second game last season.
“This core group of guys has been playing together since kindergarten,” Brower said. “It’s our last go, and we have to make the most of it.”
Syosset looks to rebound after losing to Massapequa in the Nassau A final. Yale-bound midfielder Jack Monfort and attack Andrew Giovinco, an Air Force commit, will be the go-to guys for the Braves.
Farmingdale is coming off a 14-3 season and returns a strong offensive core, and Oceanside is led on offense by four-year starters Joe Kiesche and Luke Hickam. Don’t sleep on Port Washington, which has become a winning program and is led this year by Cornell commit AJ Galassi in goal.
Garden City looks to repeat as state champ for the first time since 2012 and 2013. The Trojans are strong defensively, returning All-Long Island defenseman Colin Hart and LSM Danny Boccafola, who will play at Cornell. Trevor Yeboah-Kodie, a Brown lacrosse commit and standout running back for the Trojans in the fall, brings exceptional speed at midfield. Justin Coppola is dominant at the X, and senior attack James Basile returns after scoring three goals in the 2018 state final.
Manhasset returns almost 20 seniors, headlined by Penn commit Ed Arnold, Georgetown commit Chris Glynn and Louis Perfetto, who will play at Boston University. Aidan Mulholland, a Michigan-bound sophomore, is considered among the top recruits in his class.
Powerhouse programs aside, plenty of talent remains in Class B. Calhoun returns Nick Turrini, a four-year starter with 56 goals last season, and Kyle Munson, a Drexel-bound goalie. South Side went 12-4 and returns William Pickett, its leading goal scorer, and Nick LiCalzi, one of the top long stick middies in the nation.
Cold Spring Harbor aims to win its fifth straight county title. The Seahawks return 11 players from the team that rallied to defeat Wantagh, 10-9, in the C final at Hofstra. The Seahawks are deep at midfield, headed by Providence commit Danny Striano, his brother, Richie, a Bucknell commit, and Brady Strough, a heady midfielder committed to Fairfield.
Michigan-bound Caden Hawkinson is an athletic defenseman who also can play long stick middie, and the Seahawks will win most faceoffs with Boston U. commit Andrew DeGennaro and Dartmouth commit Vincent Gandolfo working at the X.
Wantagh is led by senior defenseman Kyle Craig, who’s like “another coach on the field,” according to coach James Polo. Junior attack and Rutgers commit Nick Teresky and junior midfielder/faceoff specialist Anthony DiMatteo, a Hofstra commit, help make the Warriors a contender.
Dark horse? Locust Valley. It has one of the county’s top goalies in Loyola commit Colton Teitelbaum, and the Falcons are more than capable on offense -- Frank Smith had 47 goals and 27 assists in 2018, and Hofstra-bound senior Cooper Trepeta is one of the top midfielders in the county.