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The “second season” has arrived for Garden City High’s undefeated (16-0) lacrosse team. Two big wins last week clinched the Conference II Championship and advanced the Trojans to the Nassau Class B quarterfinals against South Side this Friday night (May 18) at 6:30 p.m. The game has been moved to Hofstra’s soccer stadium on the North Campus due to graduation preparations.

The final regular season game was a big one as Garden City traveled to Wantagh to take on the Warriors, who were 7-0 in conference play. On the line was the Conference II Championship and the top seed in the playoffs. Wantagh has a high-powered offense and it showed in the second quarter as four straight goals put the Warriors on top, 5-3. The Trojans came back to knot the game 5-5 at halftime, then completely dominated play after the intermission, shutting out their opponents 7-0 for a 12-5 win. The nine straight Garden City goals sent a strong message and Wantagh responded with a series of late-game penalties that caused some tension on the sidelines. The rivalry has been strong for a decade and there is the possibility that the teams could meet again in the playoffs.

As might be expected, the Trojans’ big guns stepped up against Wantagh. Liam Kennedy had four goals, Patric Berkery had two goals and two assists and Devin Dwyer and Justin Guterding each had three points.

The 2012 playoffs got underway two days later as GC hosted Levittown Division in a first round game. That meant that Coach Steve Finnell had just one day to prepare his team and he chose to get the starters as much rest as possible. “Our players have worked very hard and played a very difficult schedule. We have a few guys who are hurting a bit and I wanted to give them some rest.” Finnell used his entire roster in an 11-3 win over an out-manned Division (8-6) squad.

The starting attack did get to play a half and Justin Guterding took advantage by tallying a goal and four assists. The Duke-bound junior has 33 goals and 34 assists for 67 points this season, second only to Devin Dwyer’s 28-53-81. Liam Kennedy leads the team with 44 goals.

Finnell kept his first midfield out for nearly all of the game and his first defense played sparingly. Goalie Dan Marino, still recovering from a collision with Manhasset’s Bobby Duvynak, sat out and was replaced by Matt Cortese and Dan Dolan, who held the Blue Dragons in check.

The semi-final opponent, South Side, advanced with a 14-6 win over Jericho. The Cyclones finished fifth in Conference III and recorded some good wins and bad losses. They do feature an outstanding faceoff man and some fine athletes. The teams did not meet this year. GC won two-one-sided games a year ago, including a victory in the semifinals. A win would advance the Trojans to the semifinals which are scheduled for Wednesday May 23, tentatively at 8 p.m.

LAX NOTES: James Sullivan, who has been vastly improved on faceoffs, was given the day off against Division to heal some aches. He was replaced by Matt Schmelzinger and Matt totally dominated the Blue Dragons....GC will be trying to reach the semifinals or “Final Four” for the 28th time in 29 years. The only exception was 2004....The next five playoff rounds are all scheduled for Hofstra. The State Championship will be played at Middletown High School on June 9.....Congratulations to Tim Goettelmann whose “Monster’s Kids” charity raised over $40,000 at the Wood Stick Classic.....The 18 seniors were recognized prior to the Levittown Division game. They are 53-7 over the last three years.

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