Mounties Set Up Semi-final Rematch With Cathedral
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- If you have not seen Michael McCormack play lacrosse for the Mount Greylock boys, you have one more chance.
And if you like the sport, you owe it to yourself to take advantage.
McCormack scored five goals and set up 10 more to lead the Mounties to a 22-8 win over St. Bernard's on Friday in the Central/Western Massachusetts Division 3 quarter-finals.
Mount Greylock (18-2) earned one last home game this season, a 6 p.m. start on Tuesday against Cathedral for a berth in the sectional final.
McCormack's credentials speak for themselves. Last year, he set the Massachusetts schoolboy single-season record for scoring in leading the Mounties to s Central/Western Mass title. This spring, he set the commonwealth's all-time career points mark.
And on Friday, he added to that mark by putting a show for the home crowd. McCormack scored with a couple of monstrous shots from the top of the box, but most of the time he was looking to set up his teammates.
His only point of the second half came midway through the third quarter, when McCormack had a good look at the goal from the doorstep but passed up a makeable shot to instead feed Liam Chenail, who was wide open on the edge of the crease.
Chenail finished tied for game-high honors with five goals and a pair of assists. Reilly Parker and Cole Hughes each scord four, and the Mounties got a goal apiece from Thomas Astle, Alex Harrington, Sean McCormack and Patrick Storie.
Cal Filson stopped nine of the 17 shots he faced, and Parker won 13 of the 19 faceoffs he attempted.
All in all, a pretty sharp outing for a team that had not played since May 21.
"I was really concerned about the layoff," Mount Greylock coach Brandon Asplundh said. "We got a little alumni game together the other day, and our guys played great -- beat up on the alumni.
"I was pleasantly surprised today how well we played right from the first whistle. That's the type of lacrosse we should be playing in the tournament. That's what it's going to take to get through it."
Mount Greylock jumped out to a 6-1 when McCormack scored his first goal of the game midway through the first quarter. four minutes later, McCormack set up Hughes to make it 8-2 and prompt St. Bearnard's (14-8) to call its second timeout of the game.
It was 18-3 at half-time, and although Mount Greylock's starters remained on the field to start the third quarter, it was clear that the Mounties' main interest was running the clock.
"Our ones played fantastic tonight, but we know that St. Bernard's is a good team, so when did go into our bench, we knew they were capable of putting up a lot of points," Asplundh said. "So we felt like we had to put off [pulling the starters] until the fourth quarter."
Expect those starters to get a full 48 minutes -- and maybe more -- on Tuesday night. Last year, Mount Greylock won its semi-final against Cathedral, 9-8, in overtime with McCormack providing the game-winner.
"It's a huge rematch," Asplundh said. "They're a much better team even than they were last year. We know it's going to be another great battle. We're really excited.
"It's turning into a nice rivalry for us."