The Ocean City High School boys lacrosse team fell 5-4 to Chatham in the state Group III championship game Thursday evening at Shore Regional High School in West Long Branch, Monmouth County.
JP Lagunowich scored the game-winning goal in the final minute for Chatham.
Brady Rauner put the Red Raiders on the board first 2 minutes, 43 seconds into the game. Chatham’s Ted Manitta quickly tied it to make it 1-1, which held up for the rest of the first quarter.
Rauner put O.C. back on top with back-to-back goals, giving his team a 3-1 lead later in the second quarter.
Chatham quickly tied the game in the third quarter on goals from Manitta and Lagunowich.
In the fourth quarter, Chatham took a 4-3 lead on Jack Kuppenheimer’s goal off the faceoff. O.C.’s Jake Schneider tied it up. Lagunowich’s second goal of the game won it for the Cougars.
Ocean City’s Gavin Jackson made nine saves, and Chatham’s Ryan Boyd stopped 11.
“Our kids just played their hearts out,” O.C. coach Joe LaTorre said. “They left no doubt today who we are as a program. The fact our guys played as well as they did against a perennial power, in my opinion ... our kids played with so much heart.”
Jackson Liberty 7, Pinelands Reg. 1: This was an Ocean County Tournament first-round game. Ashleigh Tavaska doubled, tripled and scored two runs for Jackson Liberty (13-10). Emily Tavaska, Jessica Cannestro and Kayla Ryan each had two hits. Emily Tavaska tripled and scored, and Emily Dubiago and Ryan each drove in two runs. Pinelands fell to 6-12. No other information was available.
Southern Reg. 3, Toms River East 2
Singles: Logan Van Liew S d. Taylor Cleven 6-3, 6-2; Chris Yrad T d. Angelo Palombini 6-0, 6-2; Ryan Leavitt S d. Will Lozzi 6-2, 7-6
Doubles: Mike Jacobus-Frank Murphy T d. Simon Schriever-Sean Kahl 3-6, 7-6; Dan Materazzi-Bryan Kahl S d. Gavin Molas-Liam Healy 5-7, 6-1, 7-6
Records: Southern 11-2; Toms River East 10-10