All-Delco Boys Lacrosse: Spence, Springfield defense at heart of title run
In addition to player of the year Dox Aitken, the rest of the All-Delco team includes:
Forry Smith, Haverford School: The senior attackman was the focal point of the Fords’ offense on the way to a second straight unbeaten run through the Inter-Ac. Smith was second on the team to Aitken with 49 goals and second to Keyveat Postell in points with 75. The All-American led the way in assists with 26 for a team that averaged 12.1 goals per game in a 20-win campaign. Smith saved his best games for Catholic League opposition, scoring five goals and two assists against St. Joseph’s Prep and three goals, two assists against La Salle. He recorded hat tricks in league play against Germantown Academy, Episcopal Academy and Springside Chestnut Hill, and he provided two goals and two assists in the April 29 win over Malvern Prep. Smith will continue his career at Johns Hopkins.
Bobby McClure, Haverford: The senior attackman is the first Haverford High lacrosse All-Delco since at least 1999. He left no doubt in a tremendous campaign that took his career points tally over 300. McClure led Delaware County in points with 122. He scored 59 goals and added 63 assists as Haverford averaged 13 goals per game and secured the seventh seed in District One, losing in the second round to state champion Springfield. McClure collected 10 or more points in a game four times, led by his four goals and eight assists against Rustin April 2. He scored seven goals against Council Rock North and capped the Central League slate with three goals and seven assists against Ridley May 10. McClure had a goal and an assist in each of the Fords’ 20 games. McClure will attend Ursinus College next year.
STAT LEADERS: Final Delaware County Leaders
Matt Moore, Garnet Valley: The three-time All-Delco selection has a chance to go four-for-four in his senior season. If the massive step he took as a junior is any indication, Moore is well on his way. The All-America honoree asserted himself as a dominant offensive presence with 48 goals, 58 assists (third in Delco) and 106 points (fourth in Delco) as the Jaguars earned a share of a second straight Central League title. Moore scored five goals and four assists vs. Avon Grove, scored six goals against Haverford and went off for five goals, three assists in an overtime win over Strath Haven. Aitken’s future teammate at Virginia scored 16 points in four playoff games.
Kyle Long, Springfield: The sophomore was the orchestrator of the state champion’s attack. Long led the county with 79 assists to go with 33 goals, finishing second in Delco with 112 points, one of six 100-point scorers. The Cougars averaged just 8.0 goals per game, and Long accounted for 4.1 points per contest. He dished a season-high seven assists against Lower Merion and six against Upper Darby. He dished 12 assists in a four-game span that included the first three playoff wins to get to states, adding nine goals. Long scored four goals and two assists in the PIAA-opening win over Delaware Valley. He had a goal and three assists against Strath Haven in the state semifinal and set up three goals in the 4-3 victory over La Salle in the state final. The University of Maryland commit has 133 career assists and 182 career points.
Jeffrey Conner, Strath Haven: The sophomore midfielder/attackman authored a breakout season as the Panthers enjoyed a historic run to a share of the Central League title and the PIAA semifinals. Conner was the primary catalyst, tallying 100 points (67 goals, 33 assists). None was more important than the game-winning goal with 30 seconds left in the District One quarterfinals against Bishop Shanahan, finishing a hat trick that sent Haven to a 6-5 win and its first PIAA tournament. Conner, an all-region pick by the Eastern Pennsylvania Lacrosse Coaches Association, scored a point in each game, topping out at eight – in a March 29th win over Downingtown East (six goals, two assists) and in the first round of districts against Rustin (seven, one). He added seven points (four, three) against Marple Newtown in the second round of districts and tallied hat tricks in the district quarters, semis and first round of states. Conner has committed to Saint Joseph’s University.
Ryan Kinnard, Penncrest: Despite a youthful supporting cast, the senior midfielder shined on both sides of the field in his second All-Delco nod. Kinnard finished sixth in the county with 60 goals, adding 10 assists. He scored 19 goals in the first four games of the season, including six in a loss to Garnet Valley. He tallied four times as the Lions upset Conestoga May 5 to stay in the Central League title hunt. He added four goals and one assist in the District One first-round win over Ridley, a team he blistered for four goals in the regular season. The All-America pick is bound for Hofstra University.
Christian Feliziani, Episcopal Academy: While the Churchmen struggled offensively, the senior faceoff man did all he could to provide a boost. The two-time All-Delco and All-America selection won draws at a 72 percent clip, illustrating the talent that has landed the Ohio State signee as a regular in U.S. Under-19 camps. Feliziani had a quiet year offensively with five goals, including two in a late-season win over Strath Haven. But his work at the X was unmatched. He twirled a perfect 19-for-19 performance in a win over Hill School April 23 and went 9-for-12 in a 5-4 overtime loss to La Salle in late March.
Zac Methlie, Springfield: The long-stick midfielder was the turnover-causing bulldog that perfectly complemented the Cougars’ passel of disciplined stay-at-home defenders as the state champions reversed a 1-5 start with wins in 19 of their last 21 games. The senior All-EPLCA honoree drew plenty of daunting one-on-one matchups, usually against opponents’ second-best attackers. But his forte was hounding ball-carriers with relentless checking, followed by dogged determination on the ground to turn pressure into possession. Methlie, who also deputized as a faceoff man for his ability to turn opponents backward off the draw, was a big reason that Springfield held its own even in games where it incurred a marked disadvantage at the X. Methlie will continue his career at Lehigh University.
Pat Smyth, Springfield: A two-time selection, the senior was the heart and soul of a suffocating defense. The Cougars allowed just 5.48 goals per game, holding opponents to eight goals or fewer in 21 of 27 outings. If you exclude the 1-5 start to the season, Springfield’s goals-against average plummets to an even 5.0. In the postseason, it conceded just 5.33 goals per game, skewed higher by the only loss among the nine games to District One champs Upper Dublin in the semifinals. The St. John’s commit saved his best for last, delivering a dominating performance in the 4-3 win over La Salle in the state title game, helping the Cougars topple the top four teams in the state per LaxPower’s rankings over the last four weeks of the season.
Matt Blommer, Episcopal Academy: The senior defenseman was a rock at the back for an injury-riddled Churchmen squad. Blommer’s defense helped EA keep opponents to 8.4 goals per game against a daunting national schedule. EA held opponents to eight goals or fewer in 12 of 20 games. Blommer also scored 10 goals, tying for seventh among EA’s anemic attack that 7.25 goals per contest. He scored twice against Haverford School in the first meeting and added two goals in a 13-8 win over Hill School. Blommer also scored in the second meeting against Haverford School, a sensational 70-yard heave to open the scoring. Blommer added a goal and two assists in an 8-7 loss to St. Anthony’s in early April. Blommer, recognized as a U.S. Lacrosse All-America, will continue his career at Notre Dame.
James Spence, Springfield: The junior two-time selection didn’t just make saves time and again; he controlled his crease with a degree of poise that set him apart from his peers. Spence and the Cougars posted two shutouts, against Central Bucks South and Lower Merion, on the way to the PIAA title. Spence recorded double-digit saves in nine games, including six of nine playoff outings. He stopped 13 shots in a dominant day against Spring-Ford, a 10-7 win in the District One quarterfinals to qualify for states. Spence added a season-high 14 saves in a 5-4 win over Strath Haven in the district’s third-place game, then 12 in the PIAA semifinal triumph. It was quality over quantity in the PIAA quarterfinal win over Avon Grove (7-6) and state final victory over La Salle (4-3), in which Spence supplied nine and eight saves, respectively, though always vital, momentum-shifting stops. The All-American will join older brother Lucas at Lehigh.