2011 Wilton dominates New Canaan to win Class M State Championship

Jun 12, 2011
NORWALK -- Playing what many members of the Wilton boys lacrosse team referred to as their "best lacrosse of the year" resulted in the best feeling of the season. Wilton easily claimed the Class M State Championship over New Canaan, rolling to a 12-2 win at Brien McMahon High School in Norwalk on Saturday afternoon. The championship is Wilton's first since winning he Division I crown in 2004 over none other than New Canaan. The championship is Wilton's fifth in the CIAC era. Throughout the game, fifth-seeded Wilton (15-5) appeared to be a step or two ahead of New Canaan, winning nearly every faceoff and every battle for a ground ball. "As a team we really came together and we knew everything we've worked for since the fall was all going to come down to those last few games," Wilton's Michael Serpa said. "To beat Darien and New Canaan, there's nothing better." Wilton goalie Samuel Somers, who held perennial six-time defending champion Darien to three goals in the semifinals by coming up with 17 saves, was equally dominant against No. 7 New Canaan (13-7), allowing only two goals while making 16 saves. "Sam Somers is special. I'm fortunate and the whole coaching staff is fortunate to have him," Wilton coach John Wiseman said. "He's been great all year, and I've always said he's the best goalie in the state. I'm biased, but I think you had the best two goalies in Jimmy Joe Granito and Sam." Wilton's Connor Melillo started the scoring 1:27 into the opening quarter, beating Granito with a high shot from short distance. Wilton extended its lead to 2-0 less than 30 seconds later on a goal by Patrick Holland. New Canaan answered to cut Wilton's lead in half when Michael Bossidy scored from short distance to make the score 2-1. Wilton's Matthew Dunn scored with 22 seconds remaining in the first to make the score 3-1 at the end of the first quarter. From that point on, it was all Wilton as the Warriors ripped off a 10-0 run. Wilton's multi-goal scorers included Serpa with four and Melillo and Christopher Nugent with two apiece. New Canaan's only other goal came in the fourth quarter when Peter Kraus scored on a wraparound try to close out the scoring at 12-2. "I think Wilton's performance against Darien and against us today was awesome," New Canaan coach Alex Whitten said. "I think they played at a different speed." Wilton senior Michael Francia closed out his career as his school's all-time leading scorer with 329 points. He bested the previous mark of 318 set by Peter McMahon during the Warriors' 13-1 quarterfinal win over Guilford. "It kind of hasn't sunk in yet, but it will and we'll realized that we've done," Francia said. "But I feel good passing the torch in this kind of fashion." It was the third time Wilton and New Canaan matched up this season, with the Rams claiming a 10-8 regular season win on May 3 and the Warriors picking up a 12-5 FCIAC quarterfinals win on May 21. Although New Canaan fell painfully short of a State Championship, Whitten still took some consolation in the accomplishments of his relatively young team. "Overall, this was a fantastic year for us. We were a young team and had a lot of growing pains over the course of the season," Whitten said. "To get to this point in the year with a young group of guys -- it was just a tremendous privilege to work with this young group of men."

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