McDonogh storms past No. 8 Severn in MIAA A lax; Simmons nets hat trick (VIDEO HERE!!)
by Derek Toney
Though the 2018 MIAA A Conference lacrosse season is in its infancy stage, McDonogh School was at crossroads of sorts. The Eagles regained their footing Friday.
No. 3 McDonogh defeated eighth-ranked Severn School, 12-6, at John McDonogh Stadium in Owings Mills. Jack Simmons scored three goals and junior Liam Powderly added a goal and three assists.
McDonogh (5-4 overall, 1-1 MIAA A) accounted for the game’s final seven tallies to win its first league match. Tuesday, the Eagles dropped a 9-5 decision at No. 5 St. Mary’s – their first loss in a MIAA A opener since 2013.
“Coach [Andy Hilgartner] said it’s a sprint not a marathon,” said Simmons. “It was a downer, but we had to get back up and we knew we would if we put in the work.”
“The last 72 hours was big for us. We had a lot of meetings with seniors individually and coach said we had to work harder as a group and it showed today,” said Eagle senior defender BJ Farrare. “In the fourth quarter, we didn’t quit on each other and we were going to dominate this team.”
Behind a renewed defensive effort and Gable Braun dominating the face-off, McDonogh buried Severn’s hopes of a 3-0 start in the nation’s toughest conference. The Eagles scored six goals in a little over three minutes as Braun won nine of 11 at the X in the second half.
Severn (4-2, 2-1 MIAA A) led 6-5 after Jake Lilly’s unassisted goal with 8:11 remaining in regulation, but an illegal check penalty seconds later switched momentum. Powderly hooked up with senior attack George Ward for a second time Friday for the extra-man score, tying the game.
Braun won the ensuing face-off, and senior attack Jackson Cummings finished off a Jack Sweeney feed. Simmons followed with an unassisted goal and later added an empty net tally for a hat trick.
“We had great effort but we weren’t executing,” said Simmons, the area’s top senior according to Inside Lacrosse (No. 5 nationally) who will play for the University of Virginia next spring. “You got to give credit to our defense, they played 10 of the 12 minutes in the third and gave up only one goal. That’s impressive.”
“We really responded well. We got some good transition looks,” said Hilgartner. “We took our time a little bit inside and found the open spot.”
Hilgartner, who’s guided the Eagles to three straight MIAA A final, was disappointed with his team’s “effort level” Tuesday at St. Mary’s. McDonogh never led, falling into a 4-0 hole by middle of the second.
“It was really disappointing being the first game of the MIAA A season, said Powderly. “We came out flat and didn’t play our potential.”
Tuesday, McDonogh welcomes No. 1 Calvert Hall College in a rematch of last spring’s league final. The Cardinals ended the Eagles’ title reign with a 12-6 victory at Johns Hopkins.
“We’re still growing as a team. It was nice to see the guys pull together,” said Hilgartner. “We had some great conversations and renewed commitments by our guys and it showed in practice Wednesday and Thursday. Hopefully, we can build off that momentum.”
No. 3 McDonogh School 12, No. 8 Severn School 6
Goals: Severn – Lilly 2, Rentz 2, Gergar, Domenech; McDonogh – Simmons 3, Ward 2, Farrare, Swanson, M. Hilgartner, Mitchell, Sweeney, Powderly, Cummings
Assists: Severn – Jarosz, Mandish; McDonogh – Powderly 3, Cummings, M. Hilgartner, Sweeney
Saves: Severn – Emmons 6; McDonogh – Long 11
Severn 1 3 1 1 – 6
McDonogh 2 2 1 7 – 12