By Nancy Haggerty
WHITE PLAINS — If Jack Grass were going to go out he was going to go out in style.
But the Bronxville senior attackman had no plans to go anywhere.
Grass netted six goals as his No. 1 ranked Broncos fought back from a slow start and three-goal deficit Friday to beat No. 2 Pleasantville 15-9 to claim the Class C Section 1 championship at White Plains High School.
Bronxville, now 19-1, will play the winner of Section 2 Wednesday in a regional contest at Albany State.
Bronxville is the small school that plays huge – its victories coming over some schools multiple times its size and its only loss being to the section’s B champion, Yorktown.
But early on Friday the scoreboard practically spelled out upset with Pleasantville jumping out to a 4-1 lead behind goals from Nick Ware, Charlie Montgomery and two from Brendan Halloran, one on a bad turnover by Broncos’ netminder Eric Pass.
But Bronxville and Pass, who finished with 12 saves, including some remarkable stops in close – two within seconds of each other early in the fourth quarter – would only get stronger.
Trailing 4-3 at the end of one, Bronxville, which began to dominate on faceoffs, took a 6-5 lead late into the half as senior Brewster Warble found sophomore Henry Grass alone in front and Warble beat Christopher Doerr (10 saves).
It was a lead the Broncos would never relinquish.
“We came out a little flat and it took us a little while to settle in,” Jack Grass said, describing his team as initially “jittery.”
That, of course, passed, in part due to Grass’s three first-half goals.
“Eventually their skill overcame our ability,” Pleasantville coach Chris Kear said. “They have four, five or six fantastic offensive threats … and had athletes all over the field.”
That was evident when Jack Grass threaded a pass between defenders to find freshman sensation Reilly Walsh (now with 39 goals), who scored his first of three goals with just over a minute gone in the third quarter to give the Broncos a 7-5 lead.
After a Jack Grass goal, Baylor Rosenbaum scored for the Panthers on a nice individual effort while falling.
But Pleasantville, which finished 15-5-1, could build no momentum, with Henry Grass scoring his second goal just 18 seconds later on a feed from junior Matt Behrens, who had three goals to hike his season total to 49.
Bronxville coach Tim Horgan acknowledged concern with the early deficit but indicated he wasn’t surprised when the Broncos got a jolt from Jack Grass’s play.
“Jack showed up today. He can take over a game like that,” he said.