By Tom Peace
BaltuimoreLacrosseNews.com, Posted 5/9/15
After playing to a two-goal game earlier this season, top-ranked McDonogh knew it would expect John Carroll to bring its A game in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland (IAAM) A conference semifinals Friday.
The Patriots battled the Eagles (20-0) from start to finish but McDonogh found a way to win 12-11. McDonogh extends its consecutive win streak to 132 games and will move on to face Roland Park – a 10-9 winner over Archbishop Spalding – in Sunday’s IAAM title game in search of its seventh straight conference title.
“They are a very senior dominating team and very well coached and some excellent athletes,” said McDonogh coach Chris Robinson, whose team has been atop the STEPS Lacrosse North America Rankings all year. “It was against a really tough opponent who gave us fits the first time we played them so it is not a fluke that they are as good a team this year.”
McDonogh and Roland Park will meet for the title at 3 p.m. Sunday at Gerstell Academy.
“For us I’m just proud of our kids,” said Robinson. “With all of the pressure we have had this year and to come through in a close game like this and execute like is really cool to see.”
McDonogh was led by Blair Kessler’s four goals and Olivia Jenner’s three tallies.
The Eagles rallied from an early 2-0 deficit with four straight goals. John Carroll responded as Parker Day (three goals) put her team ahead 7-6 at halftime.
But as it has so many times during the streak, McDonogh’s depth, ability to fend off challenges and goaltending (by Gabby Cadoux, 11 saves) was too much for John Carroll. Kessler put her team ahead, 11-10, wth 9 minutes left and Jenner put in an insurance goal with 5:30 left.
Jenner praised her netminder after the win, “She is amazing, and she comes in so key, especially with this win. (John Carroll) are such an athletic team it’s hard to stop every single one of their weapons. Gabby was a wall in goal for us today; she was awesome.”
“We have played a lot of challenging teams this season and everybody is gunning for us,” said Cadoux. “We just wanted to stay tough as a team.”
John Carroll (13-5) coach Abby Swift told her kids to keep their heads high.
“(We have a) great team, a great group of girls, they played a full 50 minutes they battled to the end. It was a tough loss today. They left everything out on the field and had each other’s backs all game and as a coach there is nothing else you can ask for.”
McDonogh School 12, John Carroll 11
JC- Parker Day 3g, Mary Kate Gerety 2g, Caroline Sdanowich 2g, Kara Klages 2g, 1a, Kelley Reilley 1g
K. Shavrets: 7 Saves
McDonogh- Blair Kessler 4g, Olivia Jenner 3g, Savanah Buchanan 2g, Kelsey Cummings 1g, Julia Hoffman 1g, Brindi Griffin 1g
Gabby Cadoux: 11 Saves