Patterson Mill overpowers Loch Raven for its second consecutive 1A Girls Lacrosse state championship

by Gary Adornato

It is hard to figure out which team was more stunned by the lopsided outcome of Tuesday’s 1A Girls Lacrosse state championship game at Paint Branch High School.

Defending champion Patterson Mill and North Region champion Loch Raven had played a tight one goal game earlier this season and did the same thing in the prior regular season. Although the Huskies took both of those previous meetings, there was no reason to believe Loch Raven would not take another strong run at them and possibly challenge for the crown.

That’s not what happened.

With senior star Bethany Bruck dominating the draws, Patterson Mill scored the first nine goals of the game, had a running clock rolling with two-and-a-half minutes left in the first half and stormed to a 20-5 victory and their second consecutive 1A state championship.

“We were shocked,” said Patterson Mill coach Kim Burgasser of the ease in which this victory came. “The regular season game was a close match. We changed our game plan a little bit. We face guarded their top player, we took away their other two players and we were just prepared with their offense, and, offensively, we are a different team than we were at the beginning of the year.”

Loch Raven coach Rob Persing summed things up this way.

“We just couldn’t get the ball on the draw,” said Persing. “Basic fundamentals we were a little weak today for some reason and that’s what we did. We didn’t show up.

“Patterson Mill is a very good team; very well coached by Kim, and they showed up today, defending their state title from last year, we didn’t.”

Patterson Mill’s Bethany Bruck (#15) prepares to capture the ball, after flipping a high draw and getting a step on Loch Raven’s Julie Rose. Bruck’s work on the draw was critical to the Huskies’ success in the 1A state championship game.

Sophomore Anna Salerno, who netted a team-high six goals, opened the barrage with a free possession goal, in the opening minute and had a hat-trick in her back pocket before 10 minutes had elapsed in the contest.

“They were playing a zone defense and we realized, if we cut, we would be open,” said Salerno of her big offensive game and those of her teammates. “Realizing that we really helped.”

Sophomore Amanda Maxwell scored Loch Raven’s first goal with 9:12 left in the half, but Elise Alders followed with back-to-back scores for Patterson Mill to push the lead to 11-1 and turn on the running clock. The Huskies went to the half leading 12-1.

One other key to Patterson Mill’s first half performance was the play of senior goalkeeper Faith Treptow, who stopped two free possession shots to blunt any potential Loch Raven momentum and she finished with five stops in the contest.

“I focused and made sure the defense talked to each other and made sure who was on each cutter,” said Treptow. “Communication is key.”

Burgasser said she and her staff had stressed to their girls to be ready for anything.

“We talked to the girls about how every game can go any way, it just matters who shows up and you have to show up,” said Burgasser, who encouraged the girls to play hard in their final game of the season and the final game as a Husky for the seniors. “The girls took that and they came out from the first draw fired up and ready to go.”

In addition to her work on the draw, Bruck scored four goals and had a team-best five assists. Salerno added two assists, Sydney Beck scored four goals and Alders finished with a hat-trick. Delaney Madsen added two goals and two assists and Lindsey Tolliver contributed two goals and one assist.

“It was very important to get the draw after every single possession because when we got the draw, they weren’t scoring,” said Bruck. “It’s a really cool feeling to end the last high school game I will ever play on a win and end it on a state championship.”

Burgasser also gave credit to her assistant coaches.

“We have a great group of girls and I am fortunate that I coach with two great people, Stacey Sewell and Ken Zorbach,” added Burgasser. “They are a big part of our program and why it is so successful. I am very lucky that we have such great girls.”

Salerno and Bruck said they team played hard in honor of injured teammates Lauren Thomas and Katelyn Springer. Springer, the team’s leading scorer, missed the title game after injuring her left knee in the Huskies’ state semifinal victory.

Despite his disappointment, Persing believes there is room for pride and optimism for his Raiders.

“We had plenty of confidence. You don’t get here for nothing,” he said. “It was a lot of hard work. This year, our rule was win five and your state champs. We won four and we came up short in game five. We’ll be back. We’ll be in contention again next year. This junior class we have, they’ll be hungry or hungrier. We’ll be back.”

If the Raiders do get back, more than likely they will see the Huskies somewhere along the way.

(at Paint Branch High School)
LR 1 4 — 5
LR 12 8 — 20
GOALS: LR—Julie Rose 2, Amanda Maxwell, Emily Ryan, Kendel Iwanki; PM—Anna Salerno 5, Bethany Bruck 4, Sydney Beck 4, Elise Alders 3, Lindsey Tolliver 2, Delaney Madsen 2.
ASSISTS: LR—Rose, Elyssa Nowowieski; PM—Bruck 5, Salerno 2, Madsen 2, Tolliver.
SAVES: LR—Catherin Levy 1; Karisma Daniels 2; PM—Faith Treptow 5.