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Boyertown breaks through, defeats Owen J. Roberts for first time

BUCKTOWN >> Many tried. Many failed.

Every past Boyertown boys lacrosse player could say they took a run at knocking off Owen J. Roberts. Some had come close. None had done it.

The current Bears team finished the job and then some Wednesday night in Bucktown with a convincing 11-5 victory over the Wildcats, Boyertown’s first win over their rivals down Route 100 in program history.

Returning All-Area first team attack Brady McFalls led the Bears with four goals while Nick Moccia and Brewer Johnson scored three and two, respectively. Skylar Wallace was dominant on the faceoff, winning 13 of 15 draws. He also scored a goal, as did AJ Robinson.

Boyertown’s Brady McFalls, center, is congratulated after scoring a goal in the first half against Owen J. Roberts. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

Rather than bask in what would historically be the highlight of the season, the Bears (1-0 Pioneer Athletic Conference, 1-2 overall) seemed intent on this being the start of a lengthy highlight reel to their season.

“We need to get used to this,” Boyertown senior defender Keegan Schealer said. “This is new for us, but we know we have what it takes.”

“We have a whole season left and I want to win a lot more,” said Wallace.

That mentality will please head coach Grady Wise.

“I’m really proud of these guys. They worked really hard in the offseason to make this happen,” he said. “It’s a really big win for them. It’s a watershed win for us, but I hope these guys continue to be hungry.”

Owen J. Roberts’ Logan Clefisch tries to get past Boyertown’s Brett Heuer Wednesday. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

It’s been a rough start for Owen J. Roberts (0-4), which had Logan Clefisch score two goals while single scores came from Joe Tordone, Cooper Chamberlain and Christian Brofft.

The Wildcats were routed by 2016 District 1 champion Upper Dublin, 16-2, on Tuesday, a painful two-day stretch for a program known for being at the top of the PAC since its inception.

“The turnovers and a lack of drive to the goal (were the biggest issues),” said OJR coach Ben Carville. “I thought we had some opportunities to turn the tide in the game and we just came up short.

“This is a new position for us. We’ll have to learn to be the underdog a little bit. Maybe we can embrace that role.”

Boyertown’s Keegan Schealer scoops a ground ball against Owen J. Roberts. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

Last year’s meeting – a 7-6 overtime win for the Wildcats – gave that extra bit of juice to the Bears.

“We didn’t forget about that,” Schealer said. “That was in the back of our minds coming here.”

“We were excited. We wanted to do it for everyone before us,” said Wallace.

Boyertown looked the sharper team from the start though OJR hung in to be within 5-3 in the third quarter.

The Wildcats held off a two-man advantage for the Bears and had a chance for a momentum swing, but it swung the other way when Boyertown turned it over and scored an excellent team goal with a quick passing move in transition finished by McFalls for a 6-3 lead with 1:32 left in the third quarter. McFalls then scored on a buzzer beater after a timeout with three seconds left to close the third to break the Wildcats’ spirits.

Boyertown’s Brewer Johnson passes away from the pressure of Owen J. Roberts’ Ryder Defibaugh. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

The Bears stayed on the gas in the fourth quarter, never allowing OJR closer than four goals down the stretch.

“I thought we played all four quarters,” said Schealer, a Moravian College commit. “Last year we never did that, but we’re definitely learning how to play together and play hard the whole game.”
Wise was especially pleased with his defensive unit of Schealer, Brett Heuer, Shane Clinton and goalie Cole Metzer (seven saves).

“I thought the defense played out of this world today,” Wise said. “They really locked down their attack. I was really, really happy with their performance.”

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