Boys lacrosse: Neuqua Valley takes third-place game from Glenbard West
It was the matchup that DuPage County lacrosse fans had hoped for, though perhaps it would have been better under different circumstances.
The Neuqua Valley and Glenbard West boys lacrosse teams were supposed to meet April 29, but that game got scrubbed due to crummy weather.
They finally met Saturday, in the state third-place game at Hinsdale Central, a contest that Neuqua Valley won 16-7 to finish its season 18-4.
"Oh my gosh, it's an amazing feeling," Neuqua Valley coach Josh Maluta said. "The kids worked hard for this all year long and they really deserve it. I couldn't be more proud of this team, battling all year long."
Fun fact: Neuqua Valley lost all four of its games this year by a total of just 6 goals. If a few of those games go the other way, they might have been playing Warren in the state title game Saturday afternoon.
New Trier defeated Warren 16-4 in the championship game.
The Wildcats were led by sophomore attackman Dan Curtis, who scored six times Saturday, including four in the first half alone. His first goal came at 8:32 from the far left side, with the assist from senior attackman Ben Foy. His second, 14 seconds later, was a carbon copy, even down to Foy's assist.
His second two ended the second quarter. The first was a blast from the left side with the assist from -- you guessed it -- Foy, at 2:02. The second came with 53 seconds to go in the half on a shot from about 10 yards out on the right side.
"Yesterday, we had a great practice, and I was feeling it," Curtis said. "I got started early, which really helped. Yesterday, we didn't have a real good first quarter. Today, we were able to get hot quick and I found my shooting stroke early."
Foy did his part on the scoring end as well, tallying a pair. The second was the prettiest, a wide-open shot from the right side, with the assist credited to senior attackman Cade Champion.
Finishing third in state? Well, that's pretty special to the graduated Foy.
"It was a really good way to end the season for all of our seniors," Foy said. "We have 19 seniors, which was good for us. We didn't expect to come this far early in the season. We lost a lot of seniors last year, and we had to do some rebuilding, but I think we played our best lacrosse at the end of the year."
As for Glenbard West (21-7), it was a tough end to a really good season. The Hilltoppers were led by senior Ben Frick, who scored twice and was the primary reason the Hilltoppers went 19 for 27 on faceoffs.
Also contributing for the Hilltoppers were junior Josh Crosby, who scored twice.
"For us, I think it's just another journey to get back here," Crosby said. "Last year, we had a great run, getting third, and this year coming back to state was really an accomplishment. I think for a lot of us, we weren't expecting to go this far, so it was really nice that we did."