Late goal gives Ludlowe 11-10 win over Wilton

Fairfield Ludlowe’s Trevor Demilt scored the game-winning goal with 2.5 seconds showing on the clock to lift the Falcons to an 11-10 victory over the Wilton High boys lacrosse team on Thursday at Fujitani Field, spoiling the home team's Senior Night.

Ludlowe gained possession with 15 seconds left off a goalie save. The Falcons moved the ball up the field quickly, with a behind-the-back pass completed by a Ludlowe player who was falling out of bounds. Tim MacDonald then passed to Demilt, who was able to turn the corner, get past a Wilton defender and score the winning goal.

With the score tied at 5-5 at halftime, the Warriors (6-9) came out of the break and tallied four goals in less than three minutes midway through the period to open a 9-5 lead going into the final quarter. Wilton got two goals from Brian Calabrese and one goal from Charles McGovern and Peter Koch.

Calabrese’s second goal came after Michael Brown stick-checked the ball away from a Falcon player deep in the Wilton end of the field. Brown carried the ball up the field unmarked and passed to Michael Lynch, who found Calabrese for the score.

But although the Warriors played well at both ends of the field in the third quarter, they squandered that good work in the final 12 minutes.

Lorin Tobey netted his fourth and fifth goals of the game with 10:17 and 9:09 left, respectively, in the fourth quarter to cut the Warrior lead to 9-7. Sig Sandberg then scored off a Wilton turnover deep in the offensive zone with 4:40 to play to tie the game at 9-9.

McGovern got his fourth goal with 2:41 left in the contest, assisted by Lynch, to put the Warriors back on top, 10-9. But with 53.5 seconds remaining, Sandberg scored again for Ludlowe to tie the game at 10-10.

“We had a strong third quarter, but I guess we got a little over-confident and didn’t finish out the game,” said McGovern. “We need to capture our emotions and work through the highs and lows of the game. We had some defensive let-downs in the fourth quarter and we gave them a chance to get back in the game.

"The team and the coaches were disappointed with the loss because of the talent we have on this team," added McGovern. "We’re going to need the whole team to play the entire game if we want to be successful in the post-season.”

Wilton had already qualified for the state tournament, but the loss to Ludlowe hurts the Warriors' chances of getting an FCIAC playoff berth. Wilton must now beat Brien McMahon on Saturday and also get some help from other teams in order to qualify.

Ludlowe got out to a 2-0 first-quarter lead before the Warriors answered with three goals in the second quarter to take their first lead of the game at 3-2. McGovern scored twice and Harrison Bardwell once in a span of 1:40 to put the home team on top.

The teams traded goals to close the first half tied at 5-5. Wilton got scores from Lynch and Christian Hansson. Both teams scored a man-advantage goal in the first half.

RJ Romeo dominated the face-off circle for Wilton, winning 20 of 24 draws during the game. Jameson Hill was solid in goal for the Warriors with 13 saves.

“We hope that this loss proves to be another life lesson for this team and will turn into something positive,” said Wilton associate head coach Steve Pearsall. “The team played very well in the third quarter, but we had some poor possessions in the fourth quarter when we were looking to take the pressure off our defense and keep them from scoring. The team has to play at a more even-keel level and control their emotions to win."