It seemed like Thomas S. Wootton High School’s boys lacrosse team played with a man down for most of the fourth quarter.
Despite being assessed seven penalty minutes in the final stanza, the Patriots’ defense held strong and helped Wootton to its fourth-straight win, a 10-4 victory against Walter Johnson.
“It’s a good win,” said Matt Saltzman, who led the Patriots with five points on four assists. “We’re trying to win the division. It’s a big game before Churchill. We have some big division games next week — B-CC, Whitman — and we’re just trying to make a statement.”
The Patriots, whose only loss came against Gonzaga on March 23, also had 2 minutes and 30 seconds of penalty time in the third quarter. Three times the Wildcats had 6-on-4 advantages in the second half and turned that into one goal. The Patriots were at least one man down for the first 6:40 of the fourth quarter and yielded one goal in that time.
Matt Hoy made 13 saves for the Patriots, 10 in the second half.
“They did a nice job,” Wootton coach Colin Thomson said. “We got fortunate on some shots that they took, but I’ll take that. It’s part of it, but I thought they played well. Obviously, going into it I was concerned because they have some nice shooters. But they did a nice job.”
After starting the season with five wins, Walter Johnson has lost two consecutive games. Its first loss was on Thursday against Winston Churchill, 13-11.
“We were flat. You can’t come out flat against a team like Wootton,” Wildcats coach Alan Pohoryles said. “They’re just really solid. I’m not saying we were tired from the Churchill game, but it was back-to-back tests against amazing teams and trying to keep up that intensity is tough. But Wootton had the better gameplan and they played the better game today.”
Wootton didn’t score its first goal until nine minutes into the game and after Walter Johnson took a 2-0 lead. Joe Kelly cleared the ball for the Patriots and took the ball into the box. With the defense drawn to him, Kelly passed to Saltzman on the right, who had a clear shot for the goal. Saltzman had the pass of the day. With the ball near the top-left of the box, he passed through the defense to Jake Mitchell (4 goals), positioned on the right of the crease for an easy score. Mitchell’s fourth-quarter goal came on a fast break and after two quick passes by Austin Schoenfeld (3 goals) and Max Coonin.
“It’s definitely an unselfish team,” Saltzman said. “We’re just trying to get the ball in the back of the net. We don’t really care how it happens. So one day it can be Myles Room, Austin Schoenfeld — all of the guys. We don’t really care who does it. We just want to win.”
Walter Johnson 2 1 0 1 — 4
Wootton 2 3 4 1 — 10
Walter Johnson (5-2): Goals — Jordan Cooper 3, Drew Ohlrich. Assists — Andy Weissman, Max Vanegas.
Wootton (5-1): Goals — Jake Mitchell 4, Austin Schoenfeld 3, Matt Saltzman, Kevin Dwyer, Myles Romm. Assists — Matt Saltzman 4, Joe Kelly 2, David Siegel, Austin Schoenfeld, Max Coonin.