By Tom Peace
BaltimoreLacrosseNews.com, Posted 5/13/15
Tim Troutner posted 16 saves as St. Matry’s continued its surprising run through the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference playoffs Tuesday by stunning second-seeded St. Paul’s School, 9-5, at Homewood Field at Johns Hopkins University.
The Saints (11-6) won their fifth straight game and advanced to the championship Friday night against top-seeded McDonogh School at 8 p.m. at Homewood.
St. Paul’s closes at 14-6.
“We’ve been relying on our seniors all year and our seniors made plays. They are the heartbeat of this team,” said St. Mary’s coach Ben Rubeor. “It’s a great feeling to go to the championship. I thought Timmy Troutner in the cage played a fantastic game. He had some very big saves and he makes plays out of the cage and intercepts passes. Any ball around the cage he comes up with.”
The St. Mary’s defense, led by LSMs Kevin Fox and Kane Randolph, were key to stopping the St. Paul’s attack, Rubeor said.
“Our two LSMs played as well as I have seen them play. Those guys have another big challenge Friday. I think this team has changed. I think, it’s a process for a coach and a team to build a relationship. I trust those guys and I think they trust me and we’re playing some pretty good lacrosse right now.
“We lean on our defenseman a lot. I think they ave hte biggest challenge of the year Friday because McDonogh has a team offense. We have to repare for them and come out to play.”
The Saints raced to a 6-2 halftime lead and, after seeing the Crusaders pull within 6-4, they pulled ahead and coasted to their first MIAA finals appearance since 2003.
The Saints saw strong contributions from the Jake Carraway (three goals), Nick Boyles (three goals) and Jack Andrews (two goals), who combined for eight of the nine goals. But it was the defense, face-off play (Alex Woodall won 11 of 18 from the X) and goalie play by Troutner that stifled the Crusaders.
Rubeor said he is thrilled to play in a championship game at Homewood.
“I am a Vriginia uy but I don’t think there are many places better to play than Homewood,” he said. “And I’m so thankful and happy that we get to spend a few more games toegtehr and lay it on the line and see what happens on Friday.”
Joe Pollard and Carter Flaig each scored twice for the Crusaders.
“It’s always a tough speech at the end – you don’t practice it that much,” said St. Paul’s coach Rick Brocato. “I am proud of them. We’ve come a long way in four years when we didn’t win a league game and be back on this stage. I am proud of what we have accomplished.
“We played a great team today – they are a matchup nightmare for a lot of folks. Their face-off guy is tough and I don’t think we handled their pressure defense. And they executed well on offense. I give them all the credit because they earned this win tonight.”
St. Mary’s Annapolis 9, St. Paul’s School 5
SP: Joe Pollard 2g, Carter Flaig 2g, Mitch Gordon 1g, 1a, Alex McGovern 1a, Jennings Shweizer 1a, SAVES: AJ Barretto: 9
SM: Jake Carraway 3g, Nick Boyles 3g, Jack Andrews 2g, 1a, Bennett Johnson 1g, Sean Mooney 2a, Griffin Giles 1a, Timmy Hardy 1a, Alex Woodall 1a. SAVES: Tim Troutner 16 saves