The quest for a state title never got out of Buffalo city limits for three Section VI boys lacrosse teams on Saturday. Hamburg and Orchard Park each saw one-goal games slip away, while Penn Yan continued its Class C dominance over Akron in front of a combined crowd of 2,600 at the Far West Regionals on Saturday at All High Stadium.
Hamburg (15-5) saw an early 5-2 lead slip away against Victor (17-3) in a 10-8 loss in the Class B regional. Hamburg senior Lucas Shafer scored three straight goals early as the Bulldogs looked for their second straight trip to the semifinals, but the Blue Devils defense stiffened to yield just two second-half goals. Shafer had four on the day, but a 6-1 Victor run of fast-break lacrosse in the second proved key.
“That really sealed the deal for them,” Hamburg coach Jerry Severino said. “Those last two and a half or three minutes where they threw the ball in three or four times. We were in scramble mode.”
Shafer became the defensive priority for Victor after taking an 8-6 lead into the break.
“He just started taking over the game,” Victor coach Jim Andre said. “We made an adjustment with our kids to make sure we lock him off when the ball went other places. ... That really helped change the momentum of the game.”
Shafer’s two shots on goal in the fourth were stopped by Brennan Mackey, and Dan Barrow notched the only goal of the quarter with 3:46 left to seal Victor’s first trip to the semis since 2003.
In the A final, Fairport (18-2) never trailed after senior Ryan Crater scored a natural hat trick of his own in the first quarter of a 11-8 win. Orchard Park (15-4) turned a 7-3 deficit into an 8-all tie in the third, but Kacin Welch’s goal gave Fairport back the lead.
Orchard Park was also shut out in the final frame while Fairport senior Justin Kesselring netted two of his three goals on scorching running shots in the fourth, sending Fairport back to the state semifinals after a one-year absence. Sophomore Kevin McParlane led Orchard Park with three goals in the loss, while Charlie Wistner made 12 saves.
“Our guys did everything we asked them to,” Quakers coach Gene Tundo said. “That’s a team you can see in the state finals easily.”
While Orchard Park and Hamburg each saw games slip away, Akron (15-5) faced a Mustangs stampede in a 19-4 Class C final loss. Penn Yan scored at will against an overmatched Tigers squad, snagging its 18th Far West Regional win thanks to seven goals from senior forward Andrew Perl. Bradley Voigt and Craig Gerhardt added three goals each for Penn Yan (17-3), while Akron got goals from Larson Sundown, Owen Hill, Zak Hayes and Wyn Blueye.
“I thought we had enough possessions to make it close, but we just couldn’t get one by the goalie,” Akron coach Bryan Bellis said.
Section V’s trio now moves on to the state semifinals on Wednesday at Cicero-North Syracuse, while the Section VI squads hope for better days against their perennial Rochester foes next year.