No. 4 Glenelg Country scores 10-5 decison behind Marzsal sisters

Jaclyn Marzsal was part of an impressive effort by Glenelg Country School’s girls lacrosse team Wednesday. Marzsal posted a hat trick as the fourth-ranked Dragons knocked off No. 2 McDonogh School in an IAAM A Conference contest in Owings Mills.

by James Peters

The name Dragons is emblazoned across the uniforms worn by the Glenelg Country School girls lacrosse team. While the name certainly connotes a frightening adversary, the Howard County school should perhaps look into changing its mascot to Giantslayer.

The fourth-ranked Dragons bested No. 2 McDonogh School, 10-5, in an IAAM A Conference matchup in Owings Mills Wednesday. Last week, Glenelg Country topped 14-state public champion Severna Park. 

Largely behind the play of Josie Pell, Jaclyn Marzsal, Regan Byrne, Cyndey Lisk, and goalkeeper Stephanie Marzsal, the Dragons (11-1 overall, 9-1 IAAM A) posted a second straight victory over McDonogh, winners of 11 IAAM A crowns. 

 “We knew that we needed a big run, and we knew we had to start both halves strong,” said senior attacker Jaclyn Marzsal, who posted a match-high three goals to go along with two assists. “I think that’s super important for us. Honestly, it starts before the game. We know we have to be super motivated, and I give a lot of credit to Coach Paige (Walton).

 “She’s our rock and motivator, and she gets us pumped before games. Honestly, when we all play team lacrosse, that’s when we do our best, and we tried to take that from last year (when the Dragons also defeated McDonogh). We try to not think too much about last year and try to be in the present and control what we can control to make sure we came out on top.”

That “big run” Marzsal mentioned turned out to be a trio of offensive outbursts that helped decide Wednesday’s match with the first being a 4-0 run to give the Dragons a two-goal halftime advantage they never relinquished the rest of the way. 

Amanda Lawson netted the first goal of the match on a free position while teammate Caroline Godine pushed the McDonogh lead to 2-0 with 17 minutes, six seconds left in the opening half on a nifty run around the goal for her lone score of the match.

Less than a minute later, Jaclyn Marzsal posted Glenelg’s first goal on a one-on-one move around the goal and her defender. She then scooped up a loose ball following a Glenelg shot and Marin Wilhelm save and then slipped a pass to a cutting Pell, who converted right in front of the goal to knot the score with 12:58 remaining before halftime.

“We really just try to go and take our girl if we see that drive,” Jaclyn Marzsal said. “We trust each other so much, and we have full faith in each other. If you think that you have that drive, you’re going to go and score.”

Case in point, Maddie Herman beat her defender and Marin Wilhelm for a 3-2 lead with just under four minutes left in the half while Regan Byrne fired in her first goal on a free position with just over a minute remaining for the 4-2 halftime advantage.

“McDonogh, they’re a powerhouse,” Watson said. “I think coming out the second half, our girls wanted to make sure we had the ball and go on a little run and have a little advantage. Maggie Weisman, on the draw, helps out a ton. Josie Pell, our draw girl, she worked her butt off up and down the field. Defensively and offensively, she’s been amazing.”

 The Eagles (11-2, 7-2 IAAM A) quickly trimmed their deficit to 4-3 with Kori Edmondson firing in a free position attempt roughly 1 ½ minutes into the second half, but the Dragons answered with another four-goal run fueled by two one-on-one goals from Jaclyn Marzsal, a creative, no-look, over-the-shoulder shot by Maggie Weisman off a freed from Marzsal, and a shot in traffic by Regan Byrne off a pass in heavy traffic by Blair Byrne for an 8-3 advantage with 15:32 left in the match.

Edmondson, the nation’s No. 1 senior by Inside Lacrosse and University of Maryland recruit, stopped the Glenelg Country jaunt with a free position goal with 12:50 remaining. But back-to-back, one-on-one scoring drives by Regan and Blair Byrne secured the Dragons a commanding 10-4 lead with 6:13 left. 

Besides those impressive offensive jaunts, the Dragons were paced by a stingy defense that was guided by defender Lisk and Stephanie Marzsal, who stopped 10 shots, including a few of the free position variety. Glenelg also outworked McDonogh, 12-5, on draw controls. 

“Steph Marzsal in goal, I mean, huge saves, timely, timely saves where we needed it and our defense being able to break out, get the ball down the field, and get it to our offense,” Watson said. “And we have multiple goal scorers. It’s so good for us. They share the ball. It’s team lacrosse from end to end. 

“This is a great team effort for us. I’m just really happy for them. They worked today against a really good team.” 

It was only the second time this spring the Eagles, who entered Wednesday averaging 15 goals, failed to reach double figures. Last spring, Glenelg Country routed McDonogh, 13-3.

Eagles coach Taylor Cummings credited the Dragons’ defense Wednesday, especially Stephanie Marzsal.

“I think their goalie played really well,” Cummings said. “She’s really talented. We got quite a few shots off, but we didn’t move her, and she did a really nice job in there. They also packed it in, and we weren’t moving as much as we need to. They had a great defensive game; we didn’t have a great offensive game. We got beat on the draw control circle. 

That’s just pure grit. That’s determination. They outclassed us in that area, and that’s something we need to figure out on our end.”

No. 4 Glenelg Country School 10, No. 2 McDonogh School 5

Glenelg Country 4 6 – 10

McDonogh 2 3 – 5

GOALS: GCS – J. Marzsal 3, R. Byrne 2, B. Byrne 2, Pell, Herman, Weisman. MCD – Edmondson 2, Lawson, Godine, Schaller

ASSISTS: GCS  – J. Marzsal 2, R. Byrne.

SAVES: GCS – S. Marzsal 10; MCD – Wilhelm 5