NASHUA — The contest was set up to be a swan song for the Derryfield boys’ lacrosse team, which hoped to stamp an exclamation point on its time in Division III by securing a 40th straight win and second consecutive championship before moving up a division next season.
Instead, underdog Hollis/Brookline proved rabid in the fourth quarter, relentlessly attacking the undefeated top seed before snatching the crown out of the Cougars’ hands with a 10-9 triumph in double overtime of the NHIAA D-III Championship Tuesday night at Stellos Stadium. Ryan Papineau scored the game winner.
Hollis/Brookline head coach Michael Soucy said he had one key to success entering the contest.
“Slow them down,” he said. “We felt that if we could keep the score below 10 goals, I thought we had a really good shot at it, and that’s exactly what we did tonight.”
The Cavs grabbed the first three tallies of the fourth quarter to take an 8-7 lead with 7:10 remaining in the contest, but the Cougars twice tied the contest after HBHS took a one-goal advantage including a Griffin Phaneuf laser on a sprint off the draw with 23 seconds remaining in regulation, just six seconds after Ryan Papineau notched the go-ahead goal.
DS maintained possession for the nearly the entire four-minute first overtime, but Papineau secured the victory early in the second overtime.
Senior Logan Blake and the stout HBHS defense stopped countless Derryfield opportunities to keep the contest within reach, and DS also hit seven posts in the loss.
Papineau finished the contest with five goals and Whitaker found the back of the net three times. Phaneuf offered four tallies for the Cougars and Grant Alenson also contributed three goals.