DOWNINGTOWN - Bishop Shanahan High School boys lacrosse player Dylan Alderman wanted his team to set the tone early.
Thanks to the way the senior midfielder plays, the Eagles executed Alderman's wishes while making a statement in the process.
"We wanted to come out fast and we had something to prove,' Alderman said. "We did that, got a lead early and kept going from there. We got in their heads a little bit and we weren't stopping there.'
Alderman controlled the midfield in a dominant first quarter by the Eagles, as Bishop Shanahan scored five goals en route to an 11-2 victory over Downingtown East on Thursday afternoon.
Alderman and Alex Wagner each led Shanahan (2-0 Ches-Mont, 3-0 overall) with three goals as the Eagles offense controlled the flow of play from the opening faceoff onward.
"We got a couple really good looks and picks off the wing and the first few shots just went in,' said Shanahan coach John Heisman. "Once you get that momentum, it's nice to build off it.'
John Mehok started the goal barrage just 54 seconds into the game. He rocketed a shot past Mark Marx to give the Eagles an early 1-0 lead.
Shanahan didn't relent from that point.
"It was all the offense and the certain schemes we worked on,' Mehok said. "I knew I was going to get some looks today with the formations we were running. It was just all about capitalizing.'
While East defenseman Jake Peden was locking down Mehok; that created opportunities for Wagner and Pat Corcoran.
Wagner's first goal at the 9:22 mark in the first put Shanahan up 2-0 and Corcoran blasted one into the back of the net to give the Eagles a comfortable three goal lead just 3:33 into the game.
Shanahan preached about setting the tone, especially after playing just its third game of the season. Heisman admitted the 11-day layoff between the Eagles opener and their second game Tuesday night had his team sluggish at one point leading up to this showdown.
"We just turned the corner in that second quarter of that Unionville game,' Heisman said. "That got us back in our rhythm, but the kids knew what was at stake today. We have that much senior leadership that we just take one thing at a time.'
Alderman's first goal followed by a blast from Eric Giannetti put the Eagles up 5-1 after a quarter. With the way Shanahan's defense was playing, that's all the Eagles needed.
Tommy Seifert followed Alderman's words of setting the tone. Seifert and the Eagles back line frustrated Nathan Wingate and Kevin Meakim throughout the afternoon, with physical play every time they headed in their direction.
"We shut just them off and pulled them,' Seifert said. "That's just been the plan all year. We just want to be physical and beat people.'
Jason Yoquinto was the unsung hero for Shanahan as the sophomore stopped 10 of the 12 shots he faced in a dominant performance in net.
"I just wanted not to get ahead of myself,' Yoquinto said. "My defense will limit the shots for me. They never mess up and I'm there for them anyway.'
"Jay played outstanding today,' Heisman said. "Our D-guys just controlled most of the play down there. They got balls on the ground and up and out of the zone. They played a really complete game.'
As Shanahan was dominating the game, Downingtown East (1-1, 3-2) was left to wonder where all its momentum went since its big win against Great Valley just three days ago.
"They jumped on us early from our mental mistakes on defense,' said East coach Todd Cliggett. "We just weren't mentally prepared. It's a long season, but we're in it. We can play with anybody.'
Wingate and Drew Rafferty were the lone goal scorers for the Cougars.
The strong performance by Shanahan was vindictive of the team's effort throughout this pivotal contest, but the Alderman and the Eagles knew this was a huge early season victory.
"It feels like a statement win,' Alderman said. "This is just the first of many.'
Bishop Shanahan 11, Downingtown East 2
Downingtown East 1 0 1 0—2
Bishop Shanahan 5 2 3 1—11
Downingtown East goals: Rafferty, Wingate.
Bishop Shanahan goals: Alderman 3, Wagner 3, Mehok 2, Corcoran, Giannetti, Montgomery.
Goalie saves: Wilson (DE) 9, Marx (DE) 1; Yoquinto (BS) 10.