By Anthony Caruso
LILacrosseNews.com, Posted 6/28/15
NEW EGYPT, N.J. – Long Island Yellow Jackets-Defo head coach Bob Defliese said winning the Lax For the Cure 2016 championship today at New Egypt High was special for many reasons.
His YJ club defeated rival M & D of Maryland, 5-3, in an event that raised a record $270,000 to fight breast cancer and has raised over $1.8 million in eight years. Defliese said the impact of the event’s fundraising is more important than winning a title.
“Obviously, that (the title) is icing on the cake,” said Defliese. “Some of the kids don’t realize it right now, but they may as they go long in life.
“Someday down the road they may realize what they have done today – in this game and for this tournament. This is a wonderful event, and there should be a lot more like it.
“There should be a lot more that raise money for a charity or cancer. I hate to say this, but this is a rich kid’s game. And they do give back so that’s never an issue. Their parents put a lot of time in helping their kids.”
M&D jumped to a 2-0 lead, but Katie Hoeg (Mattatuck, UNC) tied the game at 2-2 with back-to-back goals. Then, the coach’s daughter ,Kerry Defliese (Garden City, Syracuse), made it 3-2, before Kaeli Huff (Eastport-South Manor, USC) and Caroline Hoeg (Mt. Sinai, Johns Hopkins) increased the lead to 5-2.
“I give a lot of credit to my teammates,” Katie Hoeg said. “They were the reason why I was able to score twice. They’re really awesome and both goals helped us get the momentum back.
“It also gave me a good feeling to see my teammates step up and get involved, while contributing to the win.”
M&D Black’s Kate Taylor added a goal to make it 5-3 with about seven minutes left. Like Hoage, Taylor also had two goals, while her teammate Blair Kessler opened the game with a goal.
This is the last year that both players will be playing in this tournament. They will play their senior year of high school lacrosse, before going off to the collegiate ranks the following year.
“It’s a great feeling to know that nobody beat us here,” Katie Hoeg said. “It’s also bittersweet because this is the last time that we’re playing together.”
This game was another in a long rivalry between the two hotbed club powers.
“It’s a great one,” coach Defliese said. “A number of girls are on the Garden City High School team – and I actually teach at Garden City – and both our girls’ and boys’ teams go down to Maryland on a spring trip.”
Defliese said that his team has won four Lax For the Cure 2016 championships. This club, like the others, has been successful by playing as a team.
“They are extremely talented and they are dedicated,” he said. “The parents are all on the same page and they are all wonderful people.
“The girls are all from different towns on Long Island – and they all come together for this. They love each other and get along with each other – socially and on the field. This is a wonderful situation and you can’t ask for anything better.”