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Saturday, March 24 Sports

Fairfield Prep lacrosse rolls past Shelton

FAIRFIELD -- The long-term goal for Fairfield Prep lacrosse, as it always is, is to be playing in June. For now, with the regular season only a week old, coach Chris Smalkais would like to see his team build chemistry.

In their third game of the season -- the second against an in-state opponent -- the Jesuits didn't take too long to find a rhythm.

Behind a scoring surge that began late in the first quarter, the Jesuits rolled past Shelton 18-6 on Wednesday at University Field.

"The key is ball movement; sharing the ball and making the extra pass," Smalkais said.

Eight different players scored as the Jesuits moved to 2-1 on the season. Shelton dropped to 1-2.

"Prep is a very good team," Shelton coach Matt Read said. "We've just got to keep playing as hard as we can and get what we can get out of it."

The Gaels traded goals with the Jesuits over the first nine minutes before junior John Edmonds snapped a 2-2 tie. Edmonds' goal -- his first of three on the afternoon -- was the first of four unanswered as the Jesuits pulled away.

Junior Cam Harris and freshman Chris Brown each scored four times to lead the Jesuits.

"We had a lot of fast breaks, a lot of transition offense," Edmonds said.

Prep finished the second quarter with three consecutive goals to roll into halftime up 9-3. Four unanswered tallies in the third quarter extended Prep's lead to double digits for the first time, 14-4.

The Jesuits poured 30 shots on two Shelton goalies in their runaway win. Read, however, was pleased with how his defense held up against the premier powerhouse.

"They knew what they had to do out there. Their slides were there," Read said. "They played aggressively and assertively."

Senior Jesse Gill-Lopez scored three times for Shelton. David Hodosi, Josh Kreitler and Chris Schiffer each added a goal.

Smalkais said his team is dealing with some "nagging injuries" at the moment, but he believes they will get stronger as the year progresses. They sustained their first loss last Saturday, 9-6 against Duxbury (Mass.), and have two SCC games next week before playing host to Greenwich on April 24.

"We're still trying to find chemistry. We started on March 24, the official practice date. We had no preseason practice," Smalkais said. "We're slowly getting better each day."

The Jesuits hope their work will translate into another deep postseason run this season. They've won two straight Division L titles and six out of the last seven SCC crowns.

Read said the Jesuits are the toughest opponent on his team's schedule each year "by far," and he was encouraged by how his offense delivered.

"All the times that we played them before," Read said, "we haven't scored what we did today. I would've liked to have kept their score down a little bit, but we can only do so much.

"We play defense a lot of the time, so eventually a team's going to chip away at you."

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dbonjour@ctpost.com; twitter.com/DougBonjour

SHELTON 2 1 2 1 -- 6

FAIRFIELD PREP 4 5 5 4 -- 18

Records: Shelton 1-2; Fairfield Prep 2-1. Scoring: S -- Jesse Gill-Lopez (3g), David Hodosi (1g), Josh Kreitler (1g), Chris Schiffer (1g, la). FP -- Chris Brown (4g), Cam Harris (4g, 3a), John Edmonds (3g, 4a), William Burke Smith (2g, 2a), Colin Smalkais (2g), Pat Lambert (1g, 2a), Teddy Long (1g), Billy Overby (1g), Pat Hess (1a). Goalies: S -- Tim Schiffer (6 saves), Brandon Hoff (2). FP -- Jack O'Connor (9), Logan Cotter (4). Shots: S -- 19; FP -- 30.