CONCORD — For the third consecutive season, the Medfield boys’ lacrosse team is on its way to the Division 2 state semifinals after defeating a formidable Concord-Carlisle team, 12-5, at Memorial Field Saturday.
With the victory, coach John Isaf’s squad is crowned Division 2 Central East sectional champions again, but the team has its sights set on something greater: a state championship.
With a strong senior class of 15, the Warriors are aiming for their third consecutive state championship, but Isaf stressed that they must take it one game at a time.
“It’s just the next game,” Isaf said of the upcoming matchup against Winchester on Tuesday. “Every game in June we have to play a better game the next game than we did the last game because the competition is going to be that much tougher.”
Both teams came ready to play on Saturday, and the first half was a physical, defensive battle.
There was no score until the 8:57 mark in the first quarter when senior midfielder John MacClean ripped a shot past Concord-Carlisle’s senior goalie Aidan Long, making it 1-0, Medfield. The Patriots netted the next two goals to take a 2-1 lead going into the second.
Only two goals were scored in the second quarter, with Medfield taking a 3-2 lead at halftime.
Top-seeded Concord-Carlisle struck first out of the half, as senior midfielder Austin Hoey scored to tie it at three with just over 10 minutes to go in the third period. The two teams traded goals for the rest of the period, as the Warriors took a 5-4 lead into the fourth quarter.
Thanks to the efforts of senior faceoff specialist Jack-Henry Vara, who was a possession machine for Medfield, the Warriors started to run away with the game in the fourth quarter.
The Warriors scored nine of the last 10 goals, outscoring Concord-Carlisle, 7-1, in the final frame to close out the game and the Patriots’ season.
“They tied us up on offense,” said Isaf. “We haven’t seen a defense like that all season, but we started to figure out what they were doing and went to a different set in the fourth quarter to open it up a little bit.”
Senior attack Nigel Reiff, who recently netted his 200th career point, led the way for Medfield, scoring four goals. The Bentley commit attributed Medfield’s success Saturday to objectives the team has emphasized all season..
“It all starts with ball movement, working together rather than doing stuff individually,” Reiff said. “Moving the ball and moving our feet — those are the two things that really make it hard for defenses to cover us, so I think we really stepped that up in the second half.”