2018 D1N Quarters: Chelmsford 14, Medford 3

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By Ryan Kilian @masspreps

CHELMSFORD — The fourth-seeded Chelmsford Lions came out firing on all cylinders Saturday, as they jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back, defeating fifth-seeded Medford 14-3 to advance to the Division 1 North semifinals.

Chelmsford set the tone early on the defensive end of the field, switching defenses and employing a number of disciplined and aggressive looks, which stymied the Mustang offense from the opening whistle.

“Our defense in general is fairly aggressive,” Chelmsford coach Sean Wright said after the game. “We have a lot of senior leadership on it, so we trust them man-to-man and they continue to improve with their assignments.”

The Lion defense

The Chelmsford defense was led by senior defenseman Christian Finn, who did a little bit of everything on Saturday, helping lead the stingy Lion defense. Finn led the Lion defense in settled situations and his work on the faceoff wing, on groundballs, and in the clearing game stood out all night. Finn even scored a pivotal first-quarter goal on a transition run, which he ignited with an aggressive strip.

“All of our poles have stepped up this year,” Finn said. “Mikey (Regan) is a sophomore and he has been huge for us. Mike Gagnon is in his first year year and he has been playing real well, and our D-middies have all stepped up.”

Finn, a captain, All-MVC selection and Saint Anselm commit, has been a rock all season for the Lions.

“I have never seen a better captain and leader than him,” Wright said. “He is a cerebral player and he is one of the smartest kids on the field. He is kind of like a third coach to us. He sees the field, knows all the assignments, and has really become a two-way threat for us this year.”

Chelmsford’s offense, which looked sharp all evening, was led by the trio of senior attackman Cam Arena and sophomore standouts Christian Gastonguay and Bobby Turner. The trio combined for 10 goals and six assists in the win.

Senior faceoff midfielder Sal Lupoli also played a large role in the Lions’ victory, as he helped dictate the possession advantage for Chelmsford at the faceoff X, dominating the clamp, and adding a goal on a third quarter strike off a draw.

Chelmsford sophomore goalie Thomas Hopkins provided steady work in the cage, as he has done all season, making eight saves in three quarters of play.

Medford received a strong game in goal from senior goalie Joe Camara, who made 17 saves in the contest.

Medford finishes the 2018 season with a 16-4 record, which represents an impressive turnaround from a year ago, when the Mustangs went 6-13.

Chelmsford will advance to Tuesday’s (June 12th) D1 North Sectional semifinal, where they will face a familiar foe in MVC rival and No. 8 Andover, who defeated No. 1 North Andover, 11-8, on Saturday night. Chelmsford won their regular season matchup with Andover by a score of 12-7 on May 9th.

After defeating Revere, 15-2 in first round play, and with their win today, the Lions are now 15-5, which represents a tie for the second most wins in a single season (with 2010’s squad), since 2005, when Chelmsford went 16-3.

When Chelmsford coach Sean Wright took over the Lions program in 2016 the Lions went 8-10, which was a vast improvement over the struggles of the previous few seasons. After going 14-5 last season and graduating 14 seniors, including All-American pole Jack Gump (Trinity-Pawling – UMass), Wright has helped mold a balanced and young Lion team, who have now won six of their last seven games and are peaking at the right time of year.

“We are just really clicking right now,” Finn added. “We are playing our best lacrosse of the season.”

Tuesday night’s D1 North semifinal game against Andover will be played at Chelmsford High School’s Simonian Alumni Stadium, with a 4:30 p.m. faceoff time scheduled.

Chelmsford

 

Box Score

Chelmsford –   3   4   7   0 – 14

Medford – 0   1   0   2 – 3

 

Chelmsford

Bobby Turner – 5 Goals, 1 Assist

Cam Arena – 3 Goals, 2 Assists

Christian Gastonguay – 2 Goal, 3 Assists

Ben Gastonguay – 1 Goal, 1 Assist

Christian Finn – 1 Goal

Kullen Stone – 1 Goal

Sal Lupoli – 1 Goal

Tommy Hopkins – 8 Saves

 

Medford

Thomas Connearney – 1 Goal

Jack Lonergan – 1 Goal

Joseph Sargent – 1 Goal

Philip Haberstroh – 1 Assist

Joe Camara – 17 Saves

 

Faceoffs – Chelmsford – 17, Medford 4

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