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Bushmen need offensive surge

Pine Bush’s boys’ lacrosse team finished the 2015 season with a 14-4 record after bowing out of the sectional tournament earlier than expected in the Class A quarterfinals.

Mike Cartisano will play goalie for the Bushmen this season.

Mike Cartisano will play goalie for the Bushmen this season.

“We just couldn’t score,” said Mark Brennan, Pine Bush’s coach, of that quarterfinal loss, “and defend. It happens.”

But the Bushmen returned with many players that helped the team through a strong regular season in 2015, including Kyle Bacon and Collin Haggerty, seniors.

Bacon, a team captain, scored 60 goals last year, including 10 in an early season rout over FDR. Haggarty scored 49 goals for the Bushmen, and Tim Schof, a senior captain, scored 40 goals last year.

Mike Cartisano and Alex Jollie will be the goalies this season, and Nick Pesola, a senior captain, can play defense and as a midfielder or attack man, Brandon Boccia, a senior captain, will play in the midfield with Schof, Dave Degroot, a sophomore, and Cody Hickey, a senior and a long-stick middie. Shaun Burgos, a sophomore, will be the face-off guy. And new to the team is Justin Powell, a six-foot, eight-inch senior, who will play defense during his first and only year with the team.

“Every year we expect the same thing, to make the playoffs and make run for the section,” said Brennan. “The kids are really working hard and doing a great job.”

Out of the sectional race against Pine Bush will be Warwick, the Section 9, Class A champion in 2015. Warwick drops into Class B, but Minisink, Valley Central and other Class A teams this season will make it challenging for the Bushmen.

“Everybody is the main competition, we don’t take anybody lightly,” said Brennan. “We just get ready for everybody.”

By Bond Brungard

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