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MHS Boys LAX Seeks Discipline

The first thing Ralph Bono did after his Milford High boys lacrosse team lost 16-0 to Mansfield in the season opener — make them re-live it. In fact, he would have had the Scarlet Hawks watching the game even sooner if not for snow wiping out afternoon activities on Monday.
"We were going to do film [Monday], but they canceled practice," Bono said. "We will watch the game. I think there are enough positives in there that we can point out the negative and they will sink in and the wins will learn from it, rather than just taking it in a negative way.
"We are a young team, our learning curve is going to be pretty big," he added.
The first-year head coach is confident his team will achieve what he thinks it can achieve this spring, but he admitted the road might be a bit more challenging than what he initially expected.
"We have some talent, but we have a lot of stuff to work on when it comes to learning the game," Bono said. "We were able to hang with Mansfield for a little while."
Trailing 5-0 at halftime, Bono said the game got away from the Scarlet Hawks during the third quarter when his team "panicked a bit" and got away from some of the systems they had put in place through the first couple weeks of practice.
"We had some trouble settling in and running the offense and communicating on defense," the coach said. "We will have to build on it the best we can, but it's all about the guys having confidence in themselves and believing in what we are doing and staying disciplined instead of going back to where they were."
Several players have stood out through the early part of the season, Bono said, including goalkeeper Pietro Bon Tempo.
"He made a lot of great saves and kept us in the game," Bono said.
Acknowledging it will take a little more time to develop on offense than he had thought, Bono praised the play of Jack Boyle on offense. The senior captain is slated to play in college, and will lead a younger core including Andrew Gallagher and freshman Ryan Hazard.
"He has shown a lot of potential," Bono said of the freshman. "He is going to get a lot of reps."
On defense, Bono was quick to point out Harrison Bliss, Justin Pascasio, and Andrew Pallaria, but said the defensive execution needs to improve.
"We struggled as far as running defensive slide techniques," he said. "And we struggled to settle down on offense and work the ball around, being unselfish, it was a little helter-skelter out there."
Bono said he was disappointed about the snow canceling games this week, noting his desire to get his team back on the field quickly after the lopsided loss. And his bar of expectation has not been lowered.
"I still think my goal is to finish .500 and push to get into the tournament," Bono said. "It's going to take a little longer than expected, but we are trying to change the culture."




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