by Andrew Garda

Senior goaltender Ashton Smith has been a reliable piece of the Montclair High School boys lacrosse varsity team for a few years now. Last season, he had to step up after a pair of goalies ended up hurt early in the season, and this year he needed to do so again when one of the other goalies had to wait out a transfer period and couldn’t play.

He’s done his best, though as the Mounties try to find their footing as a team, it hasn’t always been easy.

“We have a lot of talent but our team doesn’t seem to be jelling,” he said after a recent game. “So, it’s pretty difficult in the goal, because I see a lot of shots each game and don’t get a lot of help.”

With the large amount of shots he sees, Smith has to have a short memory. If he makes a mistake he knows he can’t dwell on it, because another chance to make a save could be coming fast on the first one’s heels.

“I just have to play for my team. I can’t let any goal get into my head. I just need to make the next save,” he said. “I don’t let those goals or the easy ones that get by me get into my head.”

Smith was nice enough to give us a few minutes of his time after a recent game to let us get to know him better.

What is the weirdest way you’ve made a save?

The actual butt end of my stick. I think I had like two of those in a row in a game last year.

What are you doing for college?

I’m going to Rutgers School of Business, and I’m probably going to play club there. Because it’s a really competitive team and I don’t know that I can make it into their lacrosse program. But definitely club, because I’d like to continue. For actual school, I’m thinking about majoring in marketing and management.

What do you do for fun?

I like to play video games, relax, hang out with my friends. Go to sporting events and into the city.

What system do you play video games on and what do you play?

I play on the PC and the Playstation and I like to play Fortnight, like everyone else.

What’s one thing you want to do before you are done with Montclair?

Probably beat my record for saves in a game. My record right now is 25 for high school, so I’m aiming to beat that. The highest I’ve gotten this year was 20 against Glen Ridge.