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updated: 6/8/2012 12:24 AM

Gold team wins IHSLA Class A all-star game

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By Chris Walker
Daily Herald Correspondent

Waubonsie Valley's Connor Mersch really wasn't happy after losing to Lake Forest in the Class A semifinals last week.

On Thursday, he helped Lake Forest coach Dan Maigler win an all-star game.

Mersch scored four times to lead the Gold team to an 11-8 win over White in the IHSLA Class A boys lacrosse all-star game at West Chicago.

"The only way I know how to play is to go all out," Mersch said. "It was disappointing losing the playoffs, but I was happy to come out and have a chance to play today against the best players in the state and make a name for myself."

The winners jumped ahead to a 3-0 lead. Mersch's Waubonsie Valley teammate Zach Wood got it started with the game-opening score at the 9:29 mark of the first quarter. Mersch and Conant's Jake Pritscher added goals in the quarter.

Lake Forest's Jack Wright scored to increase the lead and another goal by Mersch made it 5-0 with only five minutes left in the second quarter. The losers finally found the back of the net with three minutes remaining before halftime when Libertyville's Zach Friedman scored. There wasn't a change in momentum, though, as Lake Forest's Sam Moran scored with 1:04 left to make it a 6-1 game heading into halftime.

The winners increased their leader to 8-1 early in the third quarter on tallies from Schaumburg's Tony DePinto and Mercsch but it also finally brought the White quad to life.

Neuqua Valley's Dario Rovito cut the deficit to 9-5 early in the fourth quarter with his first of 2 goals.

"Our coach told us to step it up because we had nothing to lose," Rovito said. "We were down something like 6-1 or something so we had to get going."

The losers cut the deficit to 10-8 as Fenwick's Pete Moreno, St. Charles East's Steven Link and Lovito all scored, but they wouldn't get any closer.

Mersch added his final goal of the night, firing a bullet into the back of net with just 1:34 remaining to all but seal the contest.

"It was a great experience to be back out here with six of our seniors and then to play with guys we've coached against," Lake Forest/Gold coach Dan Maigler said. "It was a great way to say goodbye to those guys and to finish the season."

• During the Class B game, the Black team, coached by Grayslake North's Brad Fish, rallied to defeat the White squad, coached by Lake Zurich's, Kyle Dresser, 15-14.

"I just told the guys to go out there and score some goals," Fish said. "I told them to remember that it's an all-star game -- and with their girlfriends out there, to score some goals."

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