JACKSON TWP — Brady Page's anticipation for the start of the high school lacrosse season quickly turned into production.
The junior on Seneca Valley's attack scored just 18 seconds into Wednesday's game against Butler at NexTier Stadium. He went on to score all of SV's goals in a 4-1 season-opening victory.
Page began starting halfway through his freshman season in 2019. His sophomore campaign was lost amid the COVID-19 pandemic last spring.
“I've been waiting a year for this,” Page said. “I was walking around with jitters all day, just waiting to get out here. We won the opening face-off, I got the ball and just took it to the net.
“Defensively, we played well, but we have to put more goals up on the board.”
Andrew Vetter assisted Page's first goal. The latter scored again with 2:38 left in the opening quarter before adding scores late in the second period and fourth period.
The effort was the offensive highlight in a game otherwise dominated by defense and missed opportunities on both sides.
“We're looking to initiate a lot of our offense through Brady,” said SV coach David Hall. “If he can continue to play like this, that will take (defensive) attention away from some of our other players. That's good because the stat sheet didn't show it tonight, but we have several players who we will be counting on to score a decent amount of goals.”
Butler's offense struggled early. Turnovers in the attack zone helped limit Butler to just four shots in the first half and none on goal. But the Golden Tornado made SV goalie Jorden Tate work in the final 24 minutes. He stopped six shots in that span as Butler increased its shot total to 18 in the second half.
Sophomore midfielder Landon Dubyak scored Butler's lone goal with 8:56 left in the game, cutting SV's lead to 3-1.
Dubyak, Ayden Davis, Brody Allison and Jared Chantz each had other chances for the Tornado, who had already lost to Bethel Park (12-0) and Upper St. Clair (17-7) prior to Wednesday's game.
“It wasn't the outcome we were looking for tonight, but we played better,” said Butler coach Trevor Monteleone. “We hit the post at least five times. If we finish more of our shots, this is a different game.”
Monteleone also credited his defense with a strong game, including goalie Julius Collins, who stopped seven shots.
Tate is a junior who made his first varsity start in net for the Raiders.
“We could tell two years ago when he was a freshman that he can be a special goalie,” Hall said of Tate. “He has great vision.”
The Raiders' two scrimmages yielded a solid showing against Canon-McMillan and a poor one against Mt. Lebanon.
“Because of COVID-related situations, this was the first week we've all been together as a team,” Hall said. “We began the season tonight with a section game, which isn't something we're used to. It's always good to start with a win.”
Seneca Valley was scheduled to play Bethel Park Tuesday night.