The 2017-18 SLA Boys Ultimate team has lofty goals for the school year -- and Saturday was a big first step in achieving those goals! The boys won the Philadelphia Mini Invitational at Lower Perkiomen Valley Park, beating Methacton, Strath Haven and Lower Merion on their way to capturing the title.
SLA started the day with a 15-0 win over Methacton - the first time in team history that they have shut out a Division 1 opponent. The team with a ruthless efficiency, scoring on 65% of its possessions, and never allowing Methacton a chance to see the end zone. Sophomore Josiah Mast scored four goals, and junior Eli Zimmerman had six assists on the way to the victory.
The second game saw SLA play Strath Haven. The boys had beaten Strath Haven in a close match earlier in the week, and the team was determined not to let the game be as close in the second meeting. SLA jumped out to a 10-3 lead before finally taking the game 14-6. Senior co-captain Eli Block with five assists and four defensive blocks, and senior Nate Little scored four of SLA's 14 points.
The final match up was against Lower Merion who was also coming into the game 2-0. Lower Merion has always proven to be a difficult match up for the Rockets, and today would be no exception. Lower Merion battled the Rockets for every point, eventually taking a 7-5 lead on SLA with the time cap looming. But SLA came storming back with their zone defense, winning the last five points to win the game 10-7 and take the championship. SLA was led by senior Johnny Saldivar's three blocks, including the crucial diving defensive block up 8-7 that re-energized a tired Rockets squad. Little threw to Mast for to put the Rockets up 9-7 and SLA capped the game when Zimmerman made the defensive catch and Little threw to sophomore Grahm Bacon for the winning score and the championship.
SLA goes to the Fall Brawl next weekend, playing in tournament that will bring together some of the best teams from the Mid-Atlantic region. Go Rockets!