Broadneck girls on verge of 4A state girls lacrosse repeat; boys drop Sherwood to move closer to ending championship drought
by James Peters
Going into the spring, anything less than a trip to the Class 4A state final would be a failure for Broadneck High lacrosse. The Bruin boys and girls squad accomplish that goal Friday.
For the Lady Bruins, who pounded Sherwood of Montgomery County, 17-7, in the first game of the boy-girl state semifinal doubleheader at Crofton, the trip to Loyola will give them a chance to repeat as state champions following last year’s 12-11 state final win against Arundel.
They will face the winner of Saturday’s contest between Urbana and Bethesda-Chevy Chase, next week at Loyola University’s Ridley Athletic Complex.
“[The team is] really excited,” said Broadneck junior midfielder Mary Moore, who produced two goals and four assists in the win. “It’s fun for the seniors because we’re losing like 12 next year, so this is one last ride with them.”
The boys lacrosse squad, however, will be seeking to capture its first state crown since the 1997 season after besting Frederick County’s Urbana Hawks, 10-2, in the nightcap. The Bruins await the winner of Saturday’s clash between Winston Churchill and Sherwood.
“It feels to be part of the team that is going back for the first time in 20 years,” Bruins defenders Nate Levicki said. ‘It just feels good to win. Roll `neck.”
While their path to next week’s championship round was equally dominating Friday, the way each Broadneck squad punched its ticket was largely contrasting as the girls won on the strength of their highly-efficient offense while the boys were driven by their defense.
Just like in its lopsided quarterfinal win against Dulaney, the Bruins jumped out to a huge halftime lead, this time at 12-2, with seven different players logging at least one goal, including a hat trick by Lexi Dupcak, who finished with a team-high four goals and helped her squad win 16 draws, including 10 in the decisive first half.
“She’s really good on the draw,” Broadneck coach Katy Kelley said. “That’s something she takes pride in. It’s not abnormal (and) it’s always important.”
Sherwood’s Emma Walsh (five goals) scored the first goal of the match a little more than three minutes into the contest, but Broadneck responded with a 12-1 run to conclude the first half as the Bruins found one cutter after another slicing toward the goal against a Warriors defense that seemed almost helpless in its attempt to slow the onslaught.
“That’s how we like to play lacrosse,” Kelley said. “We like to spread the wealth. We like everyone cutting. Everyone moving. Everyone feeding. Everyone being a threat.”
Broadneck, which received two goals each from Reagan Baldwin, Lilly Kelley, and Sam Lavorini in what was a hugely balanced attack, pushed its lead to as much as 16-3 in the second half before Sherwood made a late run against its opponents’ bench performers.
“We’ve been playing with each other for so long, it helps a lot on the offensive end,” Moore said. “We’re all friends on and off the field. We play really well together.”
In the second game of the doubleheader, the Bruins also fell behind 1-0 early on a goal by Hunter Bryant, but they recovered quickly in transition behind a pair of goals from defenders Braden McCassie and Nate Levicki for a 2-1 lead Broadneck would never relinquish.
“Defense wins champions,” Levicki said. “We had to put two in the net, long poles. Pole-goals always get the momentum.”
The Bruins, in fact, answered Bryant’s goal with five straight to take a 5-1 halftime lead as Ryan Della snatched a deflected shot out of the air and slammed home the team’s third goal with 1:05 left in the first quarter before Jake Chambers, the team’s third-defensive minded goal scorer, capitalized on a one-on-one drive and Della struck again on a short pass from Kyle Pierce in a largely defensive second quarter.
“Three goals in a row, all defenders,” McCassie said. “We just pushed transition. That’s what we do best. We just went down and got goals. Our defense is the best defense in the state in my opinion. We’re really good this year.”
Urbana struck again early in the third quarter on a quick counter that Gavin McKay finished with a goal to trim the lead to 5-2 with 7:11 remaining in the quarter. The Hawks, however, would not find the back of the net again the rest of the way because of stout defense while goals by Jake Schroll, Carter Orders, and Jackson Shaw gave the Bruins a commanding 8-2 lead heading into the final 12 minutes where Ryan Salazar and Shaw added goals for the final eight-goal margin of victory. Shaw’s second score was akin to an alley-oop in basketball as he rose in the air to grab and dunk Salazar’s pass.
Defensively, the Bruins, paced by Tyler Gilbert, Eli Harris, Albie Palsa, McCassie, and Levicki, held down an Urbana squad that had posted 20 goals on two occasions this spring and 47 in three playoff wins. McKay and Bryant each had scored nearly 50 goals on the season. Not to mention, Graham Hartman helped the Bruins win 12 of 14 faceoffs.
“Playing make-it-take it is so important because it gives our offense plenty of chances to score and gives our defense a break the whole time,” Hartman said. “Our wings do a great job of boxing out. I can go wherever I want to (with the ball).”
CLASS 4A STATE LACROSSE SEMIFINALS
No. 9 Broadneck 10, Urbana 2
Urbana 1 0 1 0 – 2
Broadneck 3 2 3 2 – 10
GOALS: UR – Bryant, McKay. BN – Della 2, Shaw 2, McCassie, Levicki, Chambers, Schroll, Orders, Salazar. ASSISTS: UR – Crane. BN – Fisher 2, Pierce, Salazar. SAVES: UR – Berg 15. BN – Gray 5.
No. 10 Broadneck 17, Sherwood 7
Sherwood 2 5 – 7
Broadneck 10 7 – 17
GOALS: SH – Walsh 5, Lyons 2. BN – Dupcak 4, Orso 3, Moore 2, Baldwin 2, Kelley 2, Lavorini 2, Trout, Sokolowski. ASSISTS: SH – Graham 2, Greer. BN – Moore 4, Kelley 4, Baldwin 2, Lavorini 2, Dupcak, Orso, Payne. SAVES: SH – Weisman 5. BN – Rand 3, Alperstein 1.