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Four Teams Enter the NEPSAC Playoffs
Posted 02/27/2017 09:00AM

ISL Champs... 'nuff said. #nbd #GoLASpartans @ISLSports @NEPSAC #GrotonMA #hockey

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Groton, MA --
A veritable (and virtual) cacophony of confirmations set Lawrence Academy's winter term playoff run(s) in motion on Sunday, February 26, as LA's Twitter account kept fans abreast of the good news.  

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In a show of athletic success, the Spartans boast four varsity clubs in the NEPSAC winter playoffs, with two teams hosting here on campus in Groton:

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

  1. Varsity Girls' Basketball vs. Groton School* (Home) 3:00 PM*
  2. Varsity Girls' Hockey vs. Loomis Chaffee School (Away) 4:00 PM [Home Team Video Feed]
  3. Varsity Boys' Basketball vs. Tilton School (Away) 4:30 PM
  4. Varsity Boys' Hockey vs. Phillips Exeter Academy (Home) 5:30 PM*
    *Listen to a live internet radio feed via @lawrenceacademy on Twitter and Local Sports Productions.

As far as the four clubs' approach to this coming Wednesday's games, boys' hockey Head Coach Robbie seemed to speak for all of the Spartans following his own team's ISL-clinching victory on Feb. 22.

"I think we made the switch two weeks ago," said Mr. Barker when asked how his team would make the adjustment to playoff-level competition. "We decided that we were going to make a run for it; decided that from now on we're going to play playoff hockey, which is simple, smart, tough and physical.

"So making that switch [has] obviously paid off right now, and [we've got to] continue what we've been doing and continue to buy into the strategy, and game plan, that we implement over the course of the week."

Girls' basketball Head Coach Donna Mastrangelo echoed those sentiments prior to her own squad's remaining regular season game, as she reminded her veteran players that home court advantage means a lot in the NEPSAC playoffs.

"We had a goal this year to -- yes -- make the tournament, but we wanted to be at home, and [we wanted to] be home Wednesday, we'd like to be home on Saturday," she said, thinking about the Spartans first round losses over the past three season.

"That's what we're rooting for and trying to get to and pushing for," said Ms. Mastrangelo in the aftermath of the girls' basketball Spartans historic victory on Feb. 22; a victory that saw Erin Antosh '16 become the fourth-ever member of the program to achieve 1000 points.

"I've gotta say, with Erin, that's first and foremost for her, too...because she knows this team is pretty special and we have a chance to maybe do something great.

"And, you know, we've gotten far the last couple of years, but we could really make it happen this year."

Boys' basketball had an unprecedented AA-level season, and looks to continue that success in the playoffs - a tall order against a talented team like Tilton.

"It's a great achievement for our team make the playoffs," said Head Coach Kris Johnson. "The NEPSAC AA is a very talented league top to bottom and for us to have an opportunity to play into March is great for our program, alumni, and school.

"We've worked extremely hard to get to this point and know we'll have to keep up that same type of mentality which has helped us get this far in order to keep advancing. But, at this point, we're focused on Tilton and only Tilton - they are very talented and well coached.

"We are looking forward to competing in the Quarterfinals on Wednesday," he said.

Athletic Director Kevin Potter, speaking from his role of varsity girls' hockey head coach, was thrilled for his time.

"This is a special group of young women," he said. "I am especially proud of our four seniors who have shown such great leadership throughout the year.

"We've faced such adversity this year, and are so few in number," continued Mr. Potter, who added, "I'm just amazed when I watch them perform."

As far as Lawrence Academy is concerned, every team is amazing, and the community is united behind the four varsities.

"Having four teams in the New England tournament is both an honor and a testament to the hard work that the coaches and athletes have put into their seasons," said Associate AD Caroline Heatley.

Bookmark and follow @lawrenceacademy (on Twitter) for all the latest on your #GoLASpartans.

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