Riverside used a late first-half flurry as a catapult and went on to a 15-12 victory over J.L. Mann in the first round of the boys lacrosse state playoffs at The Reservation on Tuesday night.
Third-seeded Riverside (11-2) will play on the road in the second round Thursday against No. 2 Fort Mill (9-3).
The Warriors and sixth-seeded Mann were even at 7-7 with 1:29 left in the first half when Riverside’s Ryan Cerino came around the goal and went airborne to score.
Cerino scored again with 38 seconds left, and Tristan Lawrence added a goal with 2.9 seconds remaining to make it 10-7. But Mann’s Gary Brown managed a goal just before time expired.
“I almost thought we lost the momentum at that point,” Riverside coach Anthony Quiles said. “But we went back to the guys at halftime and told them, ‘It’s a new game, and we need to win the new game.’ We just wanted to keep them hungry.”
Lawrence and Jake Bertka scored early in the second half to give Riverside a 12-8 advantage. Lawrence scored the only other goal of the quarter, as the Warriors’ defense, spearheaded by goalie Dylan Lambert, moved to the forefront.
“Dylan made some spectacular saves,” Quiles said. “Dylan’s reflexes just came out when we needed them the most.”
The Patriots (9-5) could get no closer than three in the final quarter.
“I’ve got to hand it to my faceoff guy, my specialist, Tony Consolo,” Quiles said. “I think he did a fabulous job out there again. And everybody else, from end to end, just really kept their composure. We just grinded it out.”
Lawrence and Cerino scored four goals apiece for the Warriors. Bertka had three goals, Anthony Quiles Jr. two goals and Turner Kendall and David Luke one each.
Andrew Sowder had three goals, Grayson Godfrey, Jaylen Robinson and Ben Parkins two each and Brown, Cody Schwartz and Mike Spidell one apiece for the Patriots.
“They made some real nice adjustments from the first game (a 10-9 Mann win), and we just didn’t adjust right away,” Mann coach Ron Cadorette said. “It took us a while to get back to it. They were well-coached. I’ve got to give them credit.”