Dave Kennedy/Journal News file photo
Tom Interlicchio, front, with fellow former Yorktown players and current Hofstra teammates Tommy Dooley, left, and Pat Watson in a photo taken in August.
Just got back from West Point where Hofstra pulled out a 5-3 win over ninth-ranked Army at Michie Stadium in a game televised on ESPNU that featured three former Yorktown players: Tom Interlicchio, Tommy Dooley and Pat Watson of Hofstra.
The last time they had played at Michie Stadium was against South Side in the 2004 Class B state semifinals. Their memories of that game are not too fond. And for good reason. Yorktown, then the defending Class B state champions, lost 13-7. The goaltender for that South Side team was a junior named Danny Orlando. Now, Orlando is Hofstra’s goalie.
Interlicchio, a freshman midfielder, scored the winning goal on a sidearm blast with 5:27 remaining in the third quarter to snap a 3-3 tie.
“It was good this time playing with Danny as our goalie instead of trying to score against him,” said Interlicchio of Orlando, who made 10 saves.
But when Interlicchio first walked into Michie Stadium, he was taken aback.
“We were in the exact same locker room as we were against South Side, and I was even in the same spot,” he said.
Watson, a sophomore defenseman, was a key part of a man-down unit that held Army scoreless in all six of its man-up opportunities.
Considering Hofstra’s previous five games had all been decided by one goal, Watson knew just how important his role was every time he stepped on the field.
“It’s the only time you get on the field, but you know how important it is, so you try to get the other guys fired up,” he said.
Hofstra coach Seth Tierney said Watson has become an integral part of the team after some uncertainty.
“When he decided to transfer (from Denison), there was a different coach (John Danowski, who is now at Duke),” Tierney said. “So when the coaching change happened, he didn’t know what his role would be, but he’s been unbelievable.”
Dooley’s role has also changed this season. Last year, he was Colonial Athletic Association rookie of the year and part of one of the best attack units in the nation, helping Hofstra climb to as high as No. 2 in the national rankings. But Athan Iannucci and Chris Unterstein, who combined for 107 goals last season, have departed. As a result, opposing defenses are keying on Dooley. Though he leads the Pride in scoring, he’s been held to one goal in the team’s last three games.
“He’s just a little bit snakebit right now,” Tierney said.
The Yorktown players were cheered on by a large contingent from their hometown, including the ‘Husker varsity team, whose green and white jackets were clearly visible behind the Hofstra bench. Yorktown players actually got a rare day off from practice, in fact. Prior to attending the game, they visited a tribute to Yorktown lacrosse co-founder Charlie Murphy at the Yorktown Museum in the Yorktown Community and Cultural Center.