After overcoming Dulaney 11-8 in a 4A state semifinal on Wednesday, the Broadneck girls lacrosse team is headed to the program’s first state final since winning it all in 2013.
The Bruins were led offensively by Mary Moore, Alexis Abe and Lexi Dupcak, who all had hat tricks. Defensively, Ella Killian and her fellow defenders smothered Lions attackers all game. Broadneck goalie Chloe Rand had nine saves.
“I’m just so proud of these girls,” said Broadneck head coach Katy Kelley, who was an assistant coach on the 2013 title-winning Bruins team. “We had a few obstacles; we were a little slow on the draw, but we found a gritty way to win.”
Moore gave her team the early lead, scoring 44 seconds into the match thanks to an assist by Julia Sokolowski. Dulaney answered three minutes later on goals by Sammy White and Emily Mowbray, putting Dulaney ahead 2-1. An assist from Sokolowski to Abe netted the score at 2. Dupcak then fired a shot at the cage, scooped up the ricochet and fired a strike for the 3-2 lead. Abe added two consecutive goals, pushing the Bruins’ lead to 5-2.
White scored her second goal for Dulaney on a free position shot. After goalies on both teams traded saves, Sokolowski intercepted an errant Dulaney pass and lobbed it over to Moore, who flipped it into the goal. Moore recorded one more, putting the Bruins up 7-3 heading into the half.
Dulaney didn’t go down quietly. Natalie Crowley and White scored to put the Lions within two points.
“That’s something we pride ourselves on,” said Dulaney head coach Kristi Korrow. “The effort never goes away.”
The Bruins felt constant pressure, similar to their double overtime win over Severna Park last week. Dulaney kept winning draws, finishing with 12 draws to Broadneck’s eight, to create scoring opportunities.
“They’re just so talented, especially on the draw,” Kelley said of Dulaney. “Even though we weren’t behind, it felt like that game against Severna Park.”
The Bruins wouldn’t back down either. Dupcak scored on consecutive possessions. Abe added another. At 10-5, Broadneck’s lead seemed safe, but Dulaney rallied. Jenna Welsh and White closed the gap to 10-8. With 5:15 remaining in the game, Lilly Kelley put the Bruins ahead 11-8.
The Bruins weren’t surprised by their offensive efficiency.
“I think most of our goals were from passing and cutting,” Dupcak said. “That has been one of our strengths.”
For the Lions, it was a bittersweet ending to a season that saw so much development.
“It’s been an incredible season to watch the growth from day one until now,” Korrow said, noting that Dulaney started the year with only four players who had ever played in a varsity game.
“We knew coming in that Anne Arundel is great competitively throughout the county. We knew we were going to have an uphill battle. They did a good job of disrupting our attackers and took advantage of our mistakes.”
For Broadneck to win their fourth state title, they will need to beat Arundel at Loyola University’s Ridley Athletic Complex on Saturday. Game time is 5:00pm.
“If we play Arundel, we feel good about it because we played well the last time,” said senior midfielder Nellie Gownley, recalling a 12-5 win on May 14.
Coach Kelley insisted that it won’t be easy and the Bruins can’t take Arundel lightly.
“We just have to come out, play our game and fight,” Kelley said. “It’s going to be a battle.”