Tyler Deane-Krantz was brought up to the Riverdale varsity lacrosse team as a sophomore and as a junior saw time both in the midfield and as an attack. All the while, he soaked in what the seniors were doing and saying.
“He learned from the guys ahead of him who were really good,” Riverdale coach T.J. Barnett said. “He’s a leader, he doesn’t stop and our work ethic comes from him and our other captains. He’s relentless.”
The only thing Deane-Krantz was missing from the opening two games of the season was confidence.
That changed with a goal late in the second quarter Friday afternoon against rival Horace Mann.
“The confidence just boosted and everything went well from there,” Deane-Krantz said.
The senior co-captain scored three more goals and added three assists to help pace Riverdale to a 12-5 victory at Horace Mann. It was a huge win for several reasons, not the least of which was the Falcons ability to bounce back from a disappointing 7-5 loss to Dalton Wednesday.
“It was an eye opener for us,” Barnett said. “We can’t just step on the field, we’ve got to play our game and be prepared for everybody. We have to grind out wins and we grinded out another one today.”
Barnett said Deane-Krantz needs to be in a rhythm. As he goes, the Falcons offense goes.
It took some time, especially to implement Barnett’s new zone offense, but things finally clicked in the second half as Riverdale (3-1), ranked No. 2 in New York City by MSG Varsity, scored seven straight goals to turn a close game into a rout.
“We’re going to see a lot of zone so we’ve been putting in more of this zone offense,” Barnett said. “It was new to the guys today, but as they got more comfortable we started to see better looks. It always comes down to throwing and catching.”
Horace Mann (0-3) actually led early on goals by freshmen Cole Parzick and Ian Mason and senior goalie Eddy Grafstein kept Riverdale at bay by making several spectacular saves.
But Riverdale scored the final three goals of the second quarter and took a 4-2 lead into halftime. Led by Deane-Krantz, as well as Joshua Wexler-Waite, Jake Margolis and Davis Goldstein, who had two goals apiece, the Falcons offense was sharper in the third and fourth quarter.
“The second half is really a taste of what we’re going to give the rest of the schools the rest of the season,” Deane-Krantz said.
Last year, Riverdale lost to Poly Prep in the NYSAISAA semifinals, 9-7. The Falcons opened the season with a win against the Blue Devils and again have their sights set on the title.
“It’s always our goal, we don’t like rebuild, we like to reload here,” Barnett said. “Last year’s team was a great team and went on a heck of a run, but we have to build off that into this year with a new cast of characters.”
But first, Deane-Krantz wants Riverdale to again be “King of the hill,” which makes every win against Horace Mann and Fieldston vital.
“It’s a huge game as far as our school rivalry goes,” Deane-Krantz said.
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