Garnets hit the field for 2016

With a solid mixture of youth, skill and experience, the Rye lacrosse team can expect big things this spring. On March 21, the Garnets hosted John Jay for a preseason scrimmage and showed a lot of promise for when they open the season on March 24, after press time, against Pelham.

Co-head coach Brian Dooley said there was plenty to take away from Tuesday’s scrimmage.

“I think what we saw is that we are going to need to play faster,” Dooley said, “especially if we want to compete with these teams like John Jay.”

The Garnets are hoping to get off to a quick start this year, something that seems likely, given the number of returning players from last year’s squad. Rye brings back eight starters from a 12-6 campaign and is looking to make a deeper play- off push in 2016. “We still have quite a bit of stuff we’re going over,” Dooley said. “It’s been eight months since they’ve played together, but [the returners] know that our expectations are high.”

Last season, Rye enjoyed a terrific regular season in which they beat highly touted teams like eventual Class A champion Mamaroneck, earning a No. 3 seed in the Class B sectional playoffs. But after toppling Pearl River in the opening round, the Garnets were stunned by No. 11 seed Somers in the quarterfinals, surrendering the game-winning goal with just 1:40 left to play.

The Garnets are hoping to put the memory of last season’s loss behind them, and seem well-suited to do so. With several scoring options up front, Rye’s ability to defend will dictate the squad’s success. Junior Will Hynson is poised to anchor the midfield and senior Theo Bresolin will lead the defensive unit in front of senior goalie Christian Bonaventura, giving Dooley confidence in Rye’s ability to keep opposing teams off the score sheet.

“Those three will probably be our most impactful players,” Dooley said. “But there are a lot of other guys, almost too many to count.”

With league foes like Pelham, Harrison and Eastchester on the schedule, Rye’s Garnets will look to end the season on a positive note, with games against Mamaroneck and Bronxville, the reigning Class A and C champions, respectively, before the playoffs begin.

“We have a lot more things to work on than we have strengths right now, but it’s only the third week,” Dooley said. “We just hope to get better every day and be playing our best at the end of the season.”

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