CRANFORD - The Cranford High School boys lacrosse team finished its historic 2019 season 17-3, including a program-best 12-0 start.
Along with the 12-game winning streak, the Cougars went undefeated at home and undefeated in division play for the second time in program history, Phil Marotta posted the record for career saves by a goalie with 552, and Conor Halpin was named Player of the Year in the division. Coach Reinoso also accepted the Len Roland Sportsmanship Award from the New Jersey interschoolastic lacrosse officials association for demonstrated program sportsmanship, character, integrity, and positive behavior.
"Overall, everyone involved with our program couldn’t be happier with the way our season progressed and turned out," said Reinoso. "It was a surprise to most and even us at our success rate and what we were able to accomplish collectively. As coaches, it’s always very pleasing to see a season like this blossom, as young athletes learn the value of hard work and all of the important characteristics of winning teams."
In tournament play, Cranford made it to the semifinal round of the Union County Tournament before falling to Westfield, 13-6. The Cougars also made it to the semifinal round of the North Jersey Group 3 State Tournament before falling to Chatham, 13-6. Halpin led the team with 62 goals, followed by Dante Cassaro (42), Cole Blazek (34), and Nate Caldwell (30).
The Cougars graduate nine seniors in Halpin, Marotta, Cassaro, Frank Caldwell, Ryan Echavarria, Justin Marko, Steven Shore, Anthony Granata, and Theodore Trojan.
"What part of this year‘s graduating seniors will be most missed anticipated for next season will be the aforementioned excellent leadership and character of our nine seniors, each of which had not only responsibilities of leadership, but all contributed on the field, some in huge playing-time roles and some smaller," said Reinoso. "Our staff is hoping that next years team, starting with the few rising seniors, remembers all of the positivity and hard work that went into this season, and is willing to do similarly in paying the price for success."
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