16-10 win over Wakefield seals the deal

Published May 24, 2019

WAKEFIELD — The Melrose Red Raider lacrosse team earned their second straight league title with a 16-10 win over rival Wakefield on the road at Landrigan Field on May 16. It is also their 3rd Freedom League title in 5 seasons. At 11-5, and an impressive 9-2 in the Middlesex League, Melrose is ranked Number 15 in the state and should secure one of the top seeds in the Div. 2 North playoffs.

BRENDAN MAHER’S stellar defense helped dismantle Wakefield, 16-10. It also helped clinched the Middlesex Freedom League for Melrose. (Dan Pawlowski photo)

The Red Raider’s strong second half took the game out of Wakefield’s hand. The Warriors had taken a 3-1 lead but Melrose tied it up 4-4 after the first quarter with goals from Christian Nyland, Chris Cusolito (first of his 4 goals) and Andy Calvert. Brendan Fennell broke the tie and his goal gave Melrose a 5-4 lead they wouldn’t surrender. Cusolito made Warrior defense pay with a fast transition goal that made gave Melrose a 6-4 lead at halftime.

Melrose outscored Wakefield 6-3 in the second half, taking control of the game and aided by quick goals from Matt Dussault, Andy Calvert, Brendan Fennell, Liam Maher and Chris Cusolito who had two in the frame, which helped Melrose take a lead of 12-7 at the end of the quarter. Brendan Maher was a monster on defense, limiting Wakefield’s top player, Anthony Forziati, to only 4 goals, while Melrose’s Matt Rocha held the fort at the net, shutting down scoring opportunities. 

In the second half, Matt Dussault had the moment of the game when his post-goal celebration included a Ayra Stark dagger punch, to amusement of the crowd and bench, who were also celebrating this two goals in the quarter. A shot by Brendan Maher helped finish the deal, 16-10. 

Look for MIAA seedings to be announced later in the month.