New Canaan junior Matt Blasco said he never scored an overtime goal in lacrosse to win a game. Saturday, his rocket gave the Rams a thrilling 8-7 win over Brien McMahon with 2:20 left in the third overtime in the Fairfield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference game at McMahon.
"I scored the game-winning goal against John Jay, but that wasn't in overtime,'' Blasco said. "It definitely feels good. It gives us a lot of momentum as we get ready for the playoffs."
Blasco's goal capped a furious Ram rally that saw them overcome a 7-3 deficit in the final 8:50. Blasco, Peter Kraus and Duke Repko scored two apiece for the Rams. Joe Costigan and Michael Bossidy added single goals. Scott O'Brien had one assist, and senior goalie Jimmy Joe Granito excelled between the pipes with 18 saves.
The Rams appeared headed for defeat after McMahon's Ivan Matson scored with 10:06 left to give the Senators a 7-3 lead. Repko scored with 8:50 remaining, the Rams first goal in over 17 minutes. Blasco scored with 6:30 left, and Kraus scored a man-up goal with 3:18 left. Kraus' goal with 1:43 left sent the game into overtime.
"We were a feeling a little down and we just needed a goal to give us a spark,'' Blasco said. "Once we got one we started to play better. We were in a little bit of a rush."
The teams battled through two five-minute overtime periods, with Granito making a huge save in the second OT to halt a McMahon flurry. That set the stage for Blasco, whose game winner came in transition as he raced upfield and fired a shot from about 12 yards out.
New Canaan improved to 9-6 overall and 8-2 in the conference. McMahon slipped to 8-3 in the league and 10-4 overall. The teams are in a tight playoff race with the season winding down. They could even be first-round playoff opponents. Saturday's game definitely had a playoff atmosphere.
"Any time you can win in triple overtime it's huge,'' New Canaan coach Alex Whitten said. "McMahon played with a lot of heart, as much as any team that I've seen this season. We can learn from that about how hard you need to play."
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