Goals galore on lacrosse senior night win

Senior night promised an entertaining matchup between two of the top lacrosse programs in the state. Coming into the game as the favorite, Westlake proved to be too much to handle for Lake Travis in a touted D1 lacrosse rivalry game on April 20. Westlake set the tone for the game right off the bat and didn’t look back, winning the game 13-8.

“We started off quickly,” senior Luke Mizell said. “Our defense played very well, our transition was good and our goalie play was probably the best it’s been all year.”

The first quarter was owned by the Chaps, who pulled away to a 4-0 lead. They controlled the pace of the game well and put heavy pressure on the Lake Travis defense. The Cavaliers fought back successfully in the second quarter, bringing it back to one goal, 5-4. However, Westlake scored two more goals in the last 20 seconds of the half to bring the score to 7-4 at halftime.

“[We kept] the ball hot,” sophomore Tate Young said. “Instead of going one v. one on offense, we would dodge and move the ball around, so we had an open guy that could shoot instead of dodge. One on one we weren’t getting the looks we needed.”

Neither team came out of the break too strong, and although Lake Travis chipped the lead down to just two goals, 8-6, it took a decisive fourth quarter to see which team could close things out.

The spark appeared to come in the form of a streaking run from center field into the Westlake third by Lake Travis junior Cade Green that ended in a goal. Unfortunately for Lake Travis, its team wasn’t able to harness the momentum and saw the game slowly slip from its hands. Westlake’s continuous pressure was too much to handle, and the Lake Travis defense bent until finally breaking for five more goals, making the final score 13-8.

“We just kept reinforcing the fundamentals that we’re working on,” head coach Chris Delfausse said. “Throughout 48 minutes, you’re always going to have ups and downs, so [whenever we’re struggling], we just go back to what was working and back to the basics and try to get refocused on what we’re trying to accomplish.”

It was a hard-fought win for the Chaps and one that kept them undefeated in District play going into their final game — at Austin High — before playoffs. Although having a 8-5 overall record, with losses to the likes of Highland Park and Episcopal Dallas, who are the top two in the state, the Chaps remain in the top ten of state rankings. Having lost to Lake Travis last year, this win was all the more sweet for the players and fans. It also provides momentum going into the playoffs.

“The win yesterday was huge for us as far as a confidence booster,” Delfausse said. “It was nice to avenge our old loss from last year. It’s just a big confidence booster for the guys. They’ve been a great team, so beating them makes us feel really good about ourselves and gives us a lot of positives going into playoffs. We’re also getting healthy, which makes us feel good about ourselves as well.”

On the other side of the field stood a Lake Travis team that faced its second loss of the season and its first District loss. The Cavaliers will be looking for revenge if the teams are to meet again in the playoffs, which looks to be highly probable at this time, and they may get it if they are able to convert their opportunities better than they were able to in this game.

“We’ll see them again,” junior Joey Ceshker said after scoring four goals for Lake Travis. “We’ll beat them next time.”