WILLIAMSTOWN -- The way Mount Greylock started in its Central/West Division III quarterfinal against St. Ber nard’s, one might have thought the pre ss ure of being the top seed had gotten to them.
If there was pressure, Michael McCormack was the pressure-relief valve, scoring three unanswered goals to break a first quarter tie and lead the Mounties to a 19-6 win over the eighth-seeded Ber nardians at John T. Allen Field on Saturday afternoon.
"I don’t think we have pressure. I think we have a target on our back," said Greylock defender Daivon Clement. "We just need to play well every game, and we need to step it up in the next game especially."
That "next game" is a semifinal matchup with perennial Pioneer Valley power Spring field Cathedral on a day to be determined.
It was another huge afternoon for McCormack. The junior attack scored nine goals and added two assists. That gives him 180 total points on 126 goals and 54 assists. According to Mass Prep Stars, McCormack needs three points to break the Massachusetts single-season lacrosse scoring record, held by Billerica’s Grant Whiteway. Whiteway had 182 points in 2011.
Matt Malloy added four goals and an assist for Greylock.
The Mounties trailed at 1-0 and 2-1 before McCormack erupted for three goals and Malloy scored to make it 6-2 after one quarter of play.
"We were sloppy at times, but we did a good job of controlling things that we could control -- effort, hustle," said Greylock coach Brandon Asplundh. "They got together and we had some great moments."
Malloy chipped in with four goals and an assist. The Moun ties outshot the Bernardians 32-19. Cal Filson went the distance in net for Greylock, making 13 saves.
Curtiss Vachon, who scored four goals for St. Bernard’s, made it 2-1 with 7:37 left when he caught a pass from Liam O’Brien behind the net and whipped a shot behind Filson. Exactly 41 seconds later, McCormack started the Greylock boulder rolling downhill.
Jonah Kelley set a nice pick up top and McCormack rolled off it to his left and fired a shot that beat goalie Conor McKew. Seven seconds later, Jonah Kelley scored and St. Bernard’s had to call a time out.
"It was just being patient on offense and not trying to force any passes that we don’t need," said McCormack, when asked what keyed the first-quarter run. "
Trailing 10-3 at halftime, if the Bernardians harbored any hopes of a comeback, they were dashed as the Mounties opened the third quarter by outscoring the visitors 4-1.
The Mounties are two wins away from a possible Central/Western Mass. championship. But there is much to do before that can happen.
"It’s easy to realize what we have to work on, because this was a good team, although we did end up pulling away in the end," said Asplundh. "We need to keep getting better in order to accomplish our goals. The competition is only going to get tougher."
St. Bernard’s 2 1 3 0 -- 6
Mount Greylock 6 4 6 3 -- 19
Greylock goals: Michael McCormack 9, Matt Malloy 4, Cole Hughes 2, Liam Chenail 2, Jonah Kelley 1, Sean McCormack 1. Greylock assists: M. McCormack 2, Kelley 2, Malloy 1, Hughes 1, Cole Jackson 1.
St. Bernard’s goals: Curtiss Vachon 4, Zachery Bingham 1, Liam O’Brien 1. St. Bernard’s assists: O’Brien 1, Myles Phillips-Wilson 1, Evan Benham 1.
Saves -- MG: Cal Filson 13. SB: Conor McKew 13.
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