Boys lacrosse team bests rival Swampscott at home

Marblehead’s Connor Cronin looks for a pass against the Big Blue. Photo by Libby O'Neill

The rivalry was at it again when the Swampscott lacrosse team traveled to Marblehead for a, frankly, very physical lacrosse game on Thursday. The Magicians defended their home turf with a convincing 16-2 win against the Big Blue.

One player who had it going from the start was Marblehead’s Cam Waldman (4 goals). He netted a first quarter hat-trick – the third coming with just seconds remaining in the quarter to put his team ahead 6-1.

“We’ve been working on his hands, on his stick, and so forth, just basic stuff and it seemed to come into fruition today,” coach John Wilkens said. “He had a good day.”

Marblehead was the first to every ground ball, and controlled the face-off circle from the beginning.

Conor Murnane showed out, winning the majority of his faceoffs. When asked if ground balls and face-offs were points of emphasis coming in, Wilkens said “of course.”

“Obviously if the other team doesn’t have the ball, they can’t score, but we did a good job,” Wilkens said. “Murnane did a great job. Face-offs are huge in this game.”

Talk about a highlight. In the first quarter, Baxter Jennings won a face-off before racing downfield and slotting one home in the blink of an eye.

“I think we did a good job on offense and defense,” Wilkens said. “We did a good job moving the ball [and] being unselfish, which is what we’ve been practicing, so it’s nice to see it in the game.”

Despite the result, Swampscott head coach Geoff Beckett liked how his team competed for four quarters.

“They’re a gritty group. I liked that they played hard the entire game. It was 13-1 at the half, but I liked how our goalies stepped up and didn’t quit,” Beckett said.

Adding to how his group “didn’t quit,” Big Blue’s Liam Keaney scored a beauty with 10 seconds left after some impressive off-ball movement.

“We’ve got guys playing hard the entire time. We’re still in that phase of getting better, we have a lot of sophomores and freshmen playing and they grinded,” Beckett said.

Beckett was complimentary of Marblehead and its execution, also.

“Hats off to Marblehead. They’re a strong crew and they have a lot of things going for them,” Beckett said. “We kind of knew what they wanted to do – they just executed really strongly. They were on their A-game and didn’t give us an inch.”

Wilkens was proud of his team, and liked how his players stayed composed in the “heated rivalry.”