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Plum boys lacrosse coach seeing improved play in 1st WPIAL season

Michael Love
| Wednesday, April 22, 2015, 9:00 p.m.
Junior Frank Casile moves with the ball during a game against Vincentian on April 2, 2015.
Junior Frank Casile moves with the ball during a game against Vincentian on April 2, 2015.

Plum varsity boys lacrosse head coach Tom Wesolowski said his team, despite its 0-7 record and a couple of lopsided results at the start of the campaign, is starting to turn the corner and is improving in practices and in games.

“We're starting to possess the ball more,” he said.

“That was a tough thing for us earlier on. We weren't able to get into our offense. We made adjustments and settled down on offense. Guys are working better to get open.”

Plum suffered losses by 10, 12, 16, 11 and 19 goals in its first five games. The Mustangs scored only four times.

“The guys expected those scores might happen,” Wesolowski said. “They knew they might take their lumps as a new team in the WPIAL.”

But in recent games against Gateway and Allderdice, both section opponents, the offense produced more.

Plum tallied six goals in an 11-6 loss to the Gators and had seven goals in a 13-7 setback to Allderdice.

“In the games against Gateway and Allderdice, we started to find a niche of what we want to do,” Wesolowski said. “We now have to put the whole thing together.”

The Mustangs were to step away from section play Tuesday at Hempfield, 1-6 overall, and the match was to be contested past the deadline for this week's edition.

Junior Frank Casile leads the team with eight goals.

He tallied a hat trick against Gateway and added two more against Allderdice.

Junior Joe Durso scored a hat trick against Allderdice, and junior Kyle Gruber added two goals. Also getting into the scoring act or producing assists in the games with Gateway and Allderdice were senior Brent Burkhouse, juniors Jacob Lefchik and Jason Hubner and sophomore Nino Fischetti.

“We're starting to spread the scoring around,” Wesolowski said.

“They're coming along. We're trying to get the boys to play the game at a higher level this season. They are becoming more physical and aggressive with their play. We're seeing good play from both the upperclassmen and the younger players. They're working hard, and it is translating to the field.”

Plum will play at Aquinas Academy on Thursday in a Division 2, Section 2 game before a game at independent Freeport next Tuesday.

Section matchups at home with Winchester Thurston and at Gateway are April 30 and May 5, respectively.

The regular-season finale against nonsection Penn-Trafford will be at home on May 7.

“I think after the last two games (against Gateway and Allderdice), if they play a full game, we will have a very good chance of getting that monkey off our back and getting that first win,” Wesolowski said.

“We don't know some of our upcoming opponents really well, but if we control our own game, hopefully, good things will happen. They want to be rewarded for that hard work.”

Michael Love is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach him at 412-388-5825 or at mlove@tribweb.com.

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