Hackley didn’t forget how to win the big game.
The Hornets came back in the second half and beat Rye Country Day School 12-9 in the NYSAIS championship game on Wednesday on Randall’s Island. Gabe Welch had five goals to lead the way. He knotted the score and put Hackley ahead for good with 1:04 to play in the third quarter. Bobby Hite added four goals for the Hornets. Will Jones, Kevin Kim and Will Cotter also scored. Will Waterhouse played stubborn defense for Hackley and Eli Hankin made 10 saves.
It’s the fourth NYSAIS title in five years for the Hornets, who fell last year to Fieldston early on in the playoffs.
Tommy Chai had three goals and one assist to lead the Wildcats, who had a 6-4 halftime lead. Justin Weissman and Max Manning each finished with two goals and one assist. Dylan Brickman and Christian Cho also scored for RCDS. Matt Farber and Will Dodge were strong on the defensive end.
“I was very happy for the boys,” Hackley coach Christopher Arnold said. “We had four seniors out with injury, including Nick Gutfleish, one of our two captains, and it was inspiring to see some kids who have not been on the field consistently this year step up in a championship game. Will Waterhouse was great covering Weissman and Kevin Kim went 12 for 23 at the faceoff X. There was a lot of scrapping there throughout the whole game, but Kevin came up with enough to keep the game tight in the first half when were playing a bit nervous and then was lights out in the fourth quarter when we put the game away with a run. Spencer Diaz had some key ground balls, and Eli Hankin had a pivotal save on a fast break shot by Dylan Brickman early in the third period.”