Reebok downs Merrill in double OT |

Reebok downs Merrill in double OT

Chris FreudVail, CO Colorado
SPT LAX Reebok vs Merrill Lynch 1 DT 7-5-08

VAIL, Colorado The strategy was pretty simple.Im just shooting the ball as hard as I can, Reeboks Adam Donegar said. I havent played lacrosse in a year. Im just trying to get the ball on goal.Simple and very effective. Donegars goal lifted Reebok to a 13-12 semifinal win in double overtime Saturday over Merrill Lynch, and earned the mens elite Vail Lacrosse Shootout defending champion a spot in todays title game against Team 21.That was exciting, Donegar said. I didnt come to Vail thinking we would be playing double-overtime games. The bottom line is that we won. Were excited to be here, and hopefully, we can capitalize and finish our run tomorrow.Every possession in a game is critical, but that was amplified as Reebok, which won last year as Go Fast, and Merrill exchanged runs down the field for more than 7 minutes of extra time.What went through my mind is that the guys came here to play, Reebok coach John Barocas said. This team has never let up, this year and last year. They are phenomenal players. They never let up. That carried us through. We knew Merrill was going to be tough.Speaking of tough, this was Merrills second one-goal loss to Reebok this week. Reebok also won when the two teams met in pool play on Thursday.It definitely could have gone either way, Merrill coach Paul Landalche said. As far as opportunities during the game, it was very evenly matched. What a great group of guys, great team they had? Great talent. This is the second time we played them. The first time was a one-goal game, and this was a one goal game, decided in two overtimes. Best of luck to them.Calling the DocMerrill did have its opportunities in overtime. Reeboks Jon Urbana was sent off for a minute for unnecessary roughness in the first overtime. Reebok steeled itself and killed off the advantage.In the second overtime, it was time for Reebok goalie Doc Schneider, a senior-to-be at the University of Massachusetts, to shine. He stoned Merrills Max Ritz keeping Reebok alive.Doc is the MVP of this team, Donegar said. Without Doc, this games a blowout. He is an awesome goalie. Ive never seen anything like it. Hopefully, we can ride his shoulders into a solid game tomorrow.Reebok looked like it would cruise early as it took a 4-0 first-quarter lead. Merrill answered with a four-spot of its own in the second. Reebok squandered a 9-5 advantage late in the third quarter as Merrill scored six-straight points.Reebok faces Team 21, 10-8 winners against AIG Livestrong in the days first semifinal. Given that Reebok knocked off the Cornell squad in last years semifinals, it should be a tight match.I know that theyve got a little revenge on their minds from last year, Barocas said. Those guys are unbelievable. Our guys are unbelievable. It should be a very exciting game.Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or eliteSaturdays gamesSemifinalsTeam 21 10, AIG Livestrong 8Reebok 13, Merrill Lynch/Lacrossewear 12 (2ot)ConsolationLaxGrip 17, Arizona Mermen 8The Lofers 12, Club All-Stars 55280/Tap Room 14, Team Black Seal 8The Generals 9, Team Rubi Rey 7Brine Elite 19, Team Valhalla 8Rock-it Pocket 8, Rocky Mountain Oysters 7Team Gutman 15, Footclan/Team California 3Todays gamesElite championshipTeam 21 vs. Reebok, 1 p.m., Ford ParkThird placeMerrill Lynch vs. AIG Livestrong, 9 a.m., Ford ParkFifth placeLofers vs. LaxGrip, 10 a.m., Edwards turfSeventh placeArizona Mermen vs. Club All-Stars, 10 a.m., Edwards grassConsolation championshipRock-it Pocket vs. Brine Elite, 11 a.m. Ford Park11th placeTeam Valhalla vs. Rocky Mountain Oysters, 8:30 a.m., Edwards turf13th PlaceThe Generals vs. 5280/Tap Room, 11:30 a.m., Edwards turf15th PlaceTeam Rubi Rey vs. Team Gutman, 11:30 a.m., Edwards grass17th Place Team Black Seal vs. Footclan/Team California 8:30 am Edwards Grass

Support Local Journalism