WEST CALDWELL, NJ - The James Caldwell High School’s 2017 boys lacrosse season is under way and, with hopes of rebounding from a loss to Mountain Lakes in the state finals, head coach John Timan anticipates nothing less than a conference championship and another state championship appearance.

“Our goals this year are to win the Super Essex Conference (SEC) and Waterman conference and get back to the group 1 championship game,” Timan said.

The SEC includes other Essex County schools and rivals West Essex, Millburn and Montclair. Their non-conference schedule is highlighted by matchups against Bernards, Scotch Plains-Fanwood and Lenape Valley. As Caldwell is included in two separate conferences, Waterman and SEC, nearly all of their regular season games are conference matchups. Timan notes the importance of every conference matchup and the excitement of playing a conference opponent in nearly every game.

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This season, the team will be led by returning starters James Miller, a junior who scored 35 goals and assisted on five more, seniors Vincent D’Agostino (18 goals and eight assists) and Joe Valenti (13 goals and five assists). On the defensive side, four year starting goalie Frankie Genello will lead the defensive effort. His 196 saves and 64 percent save rate from last season will be the last line on a defense led by upperclassmen Peter Vicchio, Pat Theobald and Dante Capazzoli. Sophomore Matt Fermo, who won on 51 percent of his faceoffs last year, and freshman attack Kyle Ross will also be asked to contribute as Caldwell looks to build on last season’s success.

The team opened up its conference play against Madison on Wednesday afternoon, with the game ending in a 0-0 tie. The Chiefs' next seven opponents are either Waterman or SEC opponents, beginning with Glen Ridge High School on April 1.