By ADAM SHINDER
Recorder Sports Staff
Jon Magaletti had been waiting for a chance to show off his moves. He got it Tuesday afternoon at a frost-filled Lynch Literacy Academy.
With Hector Diaz out of the lineup for the first two games of the Amsterdam High School lacrosse team's season, Magaletti has had to take on the mantle of the Rams' top attacking threat, and Tuesday against Utica's Notre Dame High School the junior was at his creative best, scoring all four of his goals on solo efforts starting from behind the goal in Amsterdam's 6-3 victory.
"Since we have Hector out, I've had to step up at practice and I've been practicing that all week," Magaletti said. "I finally got to use it."
Kevin Ottati and Matt Fedullo also scored for Amsterdam (2-0), while Anthony Yevoli and Robert Santiago each picked up an assist and goalie Dillon Smith made 12 saves, but it was Magaletti who stole the show. He opened the scoring on a man-up goal midway through the first period, and after Joey Giglio equalized for the Jugglers, Magaletti scored with the man advantage again in the second quarter to start a string of five consecutive AHS goals that put the game away for good.
Magaletti's four goals were of remarkably similar construction, as each time he took the ball from behind the cage, waited for the defense to commit, dodged to an open patch of turf, turned and stuffed a shot past Notre Dame goalie Cody Conley.
"Every time I would go left to right, I'd see who would come up and press me," Magaletti said. "If they didn't pressure me, I'd just go right to the edge."
"Jon Magaletti, he's one of those kids who's a quick, agile kid," said Amsterdam coach Paul Furman. "If you let him get one step on you, he's gonna take advantage of it."
Defensively, the Rams held strong in front of Smith for a second straight game. After holding Johnstown to just two goals in Thursday's season opener, the Rams limited Notre Dame to just one goal and very few clear chances over the first 42 minutes of Tuesday's contest before Giglio and Matt Haman tacked on goals for the Jugglers in the waning minutes.
"We've just got to be disciplined, and that goal percentage will be even higher," Furman said.
Played in bitterly cold and windy conditions that saw snow whip across the field for long stretches of the second half, neither team handled the ball with much consistency -- though when it did hit the turf, the Rams were far better at regaining control.
Santiago led the groundball charge, scooping up 14 loose balls.
"They played a good game. They picked up a lot of groundballs, and I think that's what won them the game," said Jugglers coach Brian Haman.
While Amsterdam didn't light up the scoreboard, the Rams did double their offensive output from the three goals they scored in the opener against Johnstown and Furman was pleased with how things progressed from that game.
"The offense started to click a little bit more," he said. "We really shined during that second and third quarter."
Of particular note was the contribution of freshman midfielder Fedullo, who got the start in just his second varsity game and eventually capped off Amsterdam's offensive showing in the third quarter by scooping up the rebound of a Conley save on Yevoli and rifling home a shot for his first varsity tally.
After Tuesday's win, the Rams have a quick turnaround before hosting another invaded from Utica as Proctor High School visits Lynch for a 5 p.m. face-off Thursday. Magaletti's hoping for a repeat of Tuesday -- save for the weather.
"Thursday, we'll finally have our whole team together," he said. "I just hope it gets nicer -- it's too cold for this."