Seven goals is ridiculously impressive. Seven goals on seven shots though? In a top-notch VISAA Division I lacrosse game? That’s practically unheard of.
“It’s more that you look down at the book and you can’t believe it at the end of the game,” said STAB coach Bo Perriello.
Joe Robertson was electric Thursday night as St. Anne’s-Belfield beat Collegiate 17-10 to wrap up the outright Prep League championship. Robertson poured in his seven goals on just seven shots. He couldn’t miss all night and the the Saints’ defense locking things down and senior keeper Patrick Blake standing tall in the cage, STAB rolled to the victory with a complete effort.
“It’s exciting, we’re coming together at the right time,” Robertson said. “We had mutlitple goal scorers, multiple assists, so it’s just a great all around team effort. Patrick Blake played on his head today, he played amazing. Kareem Johnson shut (Joseph White) down for the most part.”
It was a huge effort by Robertson and helped STAB give the Saints’ senior class a solid send-off in their final home regular season game, including Robertson’s older brother, Phillip.
“I give a lot of credit to these senior guys, they set a great example,” Joe Robertson said.
STAB was up 5-4 at the break, but really turned it on after the break. By the end of the third quarter, the Saints were up 9-5 including three straight goals by Robertson and they kept pouring it on.
“I thought our offense was really clicking today other than a stretch in the second quarter where we started pushing a little too much,” Perriello said. “When we showed our patience and we shared the ball we got some really great looks.”
The second half run was particularly impressive because the Saints weren’t piling up faceoff wins. The defense, led by Kareem Johnson’s six ground balls, stepped up in a big way.
Beyond Robertson’s explosive night, Jack Schultz notched a hat trick. Phillip Robertson and Javon Johnson each had a goal and an assist. Josh Reiss scored twice while George Marshall and Chris Woodfolk had a goal each. Connor Schellenberger set the table all night with three assists.
Blake finished with 10 saves on the night, rounding out the complete team effort. A red-hot Eric Buhle in the cage last year helped carry the Saints to a state title, and if Blake can stay consistent in the cage it’ll be a huge boost for STAB heading into the state tournament.
“Patty played awesome tonight and just hopefully he can keep that going he’s getting better every single game,” said STAB senior Phillip Robertson. “I was going wild on the sidelines today, he made a couple of saves right on the crease, probably three or four. He’s working really hard at practice.”
The Saints managed to hold Penn State commit and prolific scorer Joseph White in check for much of the game, though he managed to tack on a pair of goals in the final seven minutes to finish with four on the night. Matt Innes and Ben Tavenner each finished with two goals for the Cougars. Jed Londrey rounded out the Collegiate scoring with a goal and also picked up 11 ground balls.
The complete effort STAB got Thursday is what the Prep League champions will need as the postseason begins next week. STAB was named the No. 3-seed in the VISAA Division I tournament late Thursday night. They’ll host a state quarterfinal on Tuesday.
“Senior night is really special and all the underclassmen and juniors really helped us out, gutted it out,” said STAB senior Phillip Robertson. “To come out and win the Prep League championship outright is just one goal we had. That’s a first check off the goal list.”
Next up? Advancing to the state final. The Saints will face off against the winner of the Bishop O’Connell/Collegiate game Tuesday at home, so STAB could be staring down a rematch with the Cougars.