The Sacred Heart boys lacrosse team clinched the SCVAL De Anza Division regular-season title with a 12-8 victory over host Menlo School on Thursday.
The Gators improved to 10-0 (12-4 overall) while the Knights fell to 7-3 (12-4 overall) and remained in second place in the division with only two matches remaining. The loss snapped Menlo's five-game win streak.
"This was a chance for them to step up and set the tone for the last little stretch going into playoffs," said Sacred Heart Pprep head coach Chris Rotelli. "I thought they did a great job. It was good to see that happen."
Sacred Heart seniors Sean Mayle and Brian White had six combined goals to lead the way for the Gators.
"They never came off the field," said Rotelli. "In 90-degree weather that's a lot to ask. Weather its ground balls, defense or offense they're absorbing the other teams best intensity --they're huge for us in everything we do."
In the first quarter, the Gators' Frank Bell scored a goal on an assist from senior Frankie Hattler to give Sacred Heart the 4-2 lead going into the second quarter. Hattler had a solid game with four assists and one goal.
Sacred Heart's Noah Kawasaki fired in two goals in a row in the third quarter to put the Gators up 9-6 heading into the fourth quarter. The Knights outshot the Gators in the third quarter, 10-4, but could account for only one goal.
The Gators sealed the game when Hattler ran in and juked out a Knights' defender and scored with 5:03 left in the game, giving his team the final 12-8 advantage. SHP senior goalie Jack Wise came up with 14 saves.
"As a senior it's always great to beat Menlo," said Hattler. "This was our last regular-season game against them -- we love this feeling."
The Gators will wind down the regular season and take on Burlingame next Tuesday while the Knights visit Mountain View. Both teams will participate in the league playoffs, which cap the year since there are no Central Coast Section playoffs yet.
In another De Anza Division match, host Menlo-Atherton posted a 17-4 victory over Mountain View as the Bears improved to 6-4 (9-9) with two matches remaining. No other details were provided.
In the SCVAL El Camino Division, Gunn celebrated its Senior Night with a 13-12 overtime victory over visiting Saratoga. The Titans improved to 4-7 in league (4-11 overall). Aaron Miner got the game-winning goal in the extra period.
Anatole Colevas led the Titans with six goals with Elyas Daadi, Hans von Clemm and Miner all scoring twice. Chris Feri added a goal for Gunn.