Lancer Laxmen Edge Bedford in Quarters, Advance to Semis

The Londonderry High boys’ lacrosse squad is within just two victories of a Division I championship after they disposed of a higher-seeded opponent in quarterfinal-round tournament play over the weekend.

The fifth-seeded Lancers bested the fourth-ranked Bedford High Bulldogs by a 10-9 score in dramatic fashion on that opponent’s home field on the afternoon of Saturday, June 2. In doing so, the squad earned the right to try to knock off the powerful and undefeated defending state champs from Bishop Guertin High of Nashua in a semifinal-round battle at Exeter High School this Tuesday June 5, after Londonderry Times press time.

In what was a very physical contest in Bedford, Londonderry trailed 9-5 at the nine-minute mark of period number three, the Lancers netted the game’s final five goals and maintained possession of the ball much of the time to collect the 10-9 success and move onward.

Senior midfielder Nate Andrews, who potted three goals in the big game, bagged what proved to be the game-winner from close distance with a little more than 2 1/2 minutes to go in regulation play.

Londonderry climbed back to within three tallies at 9-6 with mere seconds remaining in the third quarter when sophomore stalwart Jeff Wiedenfeld scored. And the locals kept on climbing back until they took the lead and maintained it.

James Cranmer and Jake Holland scored within 30 seconds of each other early in period four, and freshman call-up Zach Fawcett tallied the goal which knotted the match score at 9-9 with seven minutes left. Holland finished up with three goals on the day just like game-winning goal-getter Andrews. Mike McAlister tallied once for the winners.

“James Twomey was amazing for us on face-offs, and we won about 60 percent of them. Success on face-offs and ball control were two huge keys for us,” said first year coach Roger Sampson.

Goalies Ross Carroll and Josh Harmon combined for some big stops for LHS, with Harmon and his defense keeping the Bulldogs scoreless during the absolutely huge fourth quarter.

Both Londonderry and Bedford strode into their big tournament match having won six of their last seven matches, but head-to-head the Bulldogs bested the Lancers pretty handily in an 11-6 decision at LHS back on May 7. However, the locals won the big rematch with the trip to the semis on the table.

Looking forward to the semifinal against Guertin, Londonderry had to have it in mind, at least somewhat, that it had dropped a 15-6 decision to the powerful defending league champs in Nashua on May 2. But with precisely nobody expecting anyone to be able to beat Guertin this spring, the Lancers had very little pressure on them going into the semis.

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