Masuk girls lacrosse team defeated in title game

Sam Henry makes her way past the New Fairfield defense for a goal as teammate Lilly Cameron (No. 21) looks on.

NEWTOWN, CT — Despite a valiant effort by the Panthers, third seed New Fairfield ended top seed Masuk High’s South-West Conference title hopes with a 9-6 win in Thursday’s lacrosse championship game, at neutral site Newtown High.

The game was tied 2-2 after one quarter of play, Sam Henry connected for a 3-2 lead early in the second quarter, but the Rebels ran off four straight goals to seize a 6-3 lead. A late first-half net-finder by Henry made it 6-4 at the half.

Masuk pulled to within 6-5 but saw the Rebels answer quickly early in the third en route to building a 9-5 lead.

Bailey Bajda makes a pass during the SWC Championship game.

Henry finished with three goals and an assist, Lilly Cameron had two goals and Bailey Bajda netted a goal and an assist.

For New Fairfield Brenna Romanello had four goals, Julia Nitti and Mya Fidaleo two tallies each and Ava O’Rourke one goal and one assist.

Both goaltenders came up with key saves. Morgan Morus made 10 stops for the Rebels and Sophia Clark 11 for the Panthers.

Masuk Coach Rob Troesser’s team lost just once in the regular season that included a win over the Rebels.

“A back and forth start to the game kept our team focused. When our offense started to struggle with finding the net, the nerves became an issue and New Fairfield’s experience in these types of games showed,” Troesser said. “The lack of experience in late postseason play was the difference. We had plenty of opportunities on offense with little to show. Our defense did a great job holding on despite the numerous opportunities.”

This tremendous season is not finished yet as the Panthers get a fresh start beginning on the last day of May. Masuk is the top seed in the Class L State Tournament and will host either No. 16 Bristol Eastern or No 17 Wethersfield in the May 31 quarterfinals set for 5 p.m.

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