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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, May 26, 2011

Section II winning streak ends at 79
Lady Dutch dethroned, depart with dignity

By Jordan J. Michael

GUILDERLAND –– All great things must one day come to an end. For the Lady Dutch lacrosse team, that day was Wednesday.

After four straight seasons as Class A champions, after 79 straight wins, the Lady Dutch lost by one point at the University of Albany on Wednesday night.

The history. The legacy. The dynasty the Dutch had built, led by Gary Chatnik, one of the most methodical of coaches. A near miss at a state title two years ago. Is it all vanished? Or, does it still exist?

The Niskayuna Silver Warriors stole Guilderland’s fifth consecutive Class A title –– like a rug pulled swiftly from under their feet.

Down 15 to 14 with two minutes remaining in regulation, the Dutch tried desperately to regain possession, but the horn sounded and Niskayuna stormed the field. It was a celebration worthy of the first Section II team to beat Guilderland in four-and-a-half years.

The Lady Dutch gingerly walked to the sideline, holding back tears. They stood and watched as Niskayuna raised a trophy that Guilderland had owned for so long –– like old dusty records that never leave the shelf.

“It’s really disappointing because this game was so close,” said junior Shelby Iapoce, who cut through the defense, as fast as she always is, to give the Dutch a 14-to-13 lead with 5:41 left. “We played our hearts out,” she said.

Guilderland and Niskayuna kept answering each other’s scores for 48 minutes. The Dutch’s biggest lead was three, 6 to 3, with 8:46 left in the first half. The Warriors jumped out to a 2-to-0 lead in the beginning, but it didn’t last for more than four minutes.

The atmosphere was electric and the competitiveness was unmatched. Back and forth each team went –– streaks of red and white. Up and down the field with gusto.

“It was a great game to watch,” said Chatnik, not looking particularly miserable after the game. “Each team played very hard and tried to stop each other. It was an outstanding game.”

Chatnik wasn’t happy that Niskayuna beat his team, but said, “I’m happy for them.”

He went on, “We never talked about our winning streak,” Chatnik said. “The media always talked about it, but we just wanted to win a championship like everyone else.”

The most amazing statistic of the night was Kayla Treanor’s 20 draw controls for Niskayuna. Treanor, a dangerous and confident drawer, allowed Guilderland only seven draw controls for the entire game. Many times, she would scoop the ball right into her stick and start running away. Treanor also scored five goals, including the game-winner after shaking two defenders.

“She’s an outstanding player,” said Chatnik of Treanor. “She played as good as anyone possibly could.”

Freshman Morgan Hardt, who took most of the draws against Treanor, had a tough time figuring out all of Treanor’s different techniques. “She was great,” Hardt said. “I kept working at it, but anything can change.”

Senior Erin Mossop, one of the quickest and most productive attackers around, scored five goals for the Dutch. She was impossible to defend on all five. She should have had six goals, but one was called back in the first half after the referees deemed her stick illegal.

After the hard loss, Mossop and her sister senior, Jess Marini, brought everything down to earth.

“Coming into this game, our thoughts weren’t about the winning streak,” Mossop said. “Our thoughts were about being together and playing together. We’ll miss our togetherness more than all those championships.”

“We play because we love this game and love each other,” added Marini, clearly moved.

Iapoce told The Enterprise that the team was “so close” this year. They were able to spend time with each other every day, without ever fighting.

“Ideally, we wanted another championship,” said Mossop. “But, we all share a passion for the game and that’s what counts the most in the end."

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