Senior midfielder Ryan Della has the hardest shot on the Broadneck boys lacrosse team, something with which Carter Berg would agree.
Della whistled a 10-yard line drive past the Urbana goalie 19.8 seconds into sudden-death overtime, giving the Bruins a 9-8 victory and setting off wild celebration in the Class 4A state semifinal at Crofton High in Gambrills on Saturday.
On the winning goal, Della took a feed from Ryan Salazar from behind the cage, curled around to the front, and since he knew that Berg was left-handed, he shot it to the upper left corner.
“It’s such a surreal moment,” said Della, who scored a game-high four goals. “You would never think as a kid a moment like that could happen.”
Broadneck (19-0) experienced a close game for a change. The Bruins only loss over the past two seasons came to Sherwood in the Class 4A state final last year.
Broadneck will play Sherwood again for the championship on Wednesday, May 24 at 8:00pm at Stevenson University in Owings Mills.
The Bruins beat Sherwood, 20-5, during April.
“Everybody is playing their best lacrosse in May,” Broadneck coach Jeff McGuire said. “We already saw them, but they are a completely different team. We are 19-0 with a target on our back. We are battle-tested, and I love our odds.”
Broadneck led for most of the second half and for half of the second quarter.
Broadneck gave their team a 7-4 cushion on goals from Jackson Shaw (three goals) and Zach Thayer with about eight minutes to go in the third quarter.
Bruins goalie Colin Gray (nine saves) had his best stretch of the game late in the third, making four consecutive saves.
Urbana cut the gap to 7-5 with nine minutes remaining in the final quarter when Jayden Sharper scored on a feed from Dylan Lange.
Then Urbana closed the margin to 7-6 when junior attacker Gavin McKay scored on a feed from Elijah Jean-Jacques 1:08 later.
Broadneck went ahead 8-6 with 1:52 left, but McKay recorded consecutive goals in the final 1:28 to force overtime.
“We knew they were going to bring,” McGuire said of Urbana. “They came off the bus with music and noise. Our guys love a challenge.”
Urbana got on the board first and had the better of the play early. The Hawks’ Hunter Bryant beat Gray.
Gray responded to the goal by making a save on Bryant.
Broadneck’s first shot came with 5:20 remaining as Berg rejected Tyler Hikes’ attempt.
After an Urbana timeout with 3:23 remaining, Bryant took another shot that went wide of the goal.
Broadneck got a spark in the final seconds of the first quarter. Midfielder Eli Harris decked Jayden Tundo near the Broadneck goal and the Bruins immediately gained possession. The end result: a Jake Chambers goal to make it 1-1 – the score after the first quarter.
Urbana opened the scoring in the second quarter as Bryant scored his second goal on a feed from Lange 1:13 into play.
Broadneck answered right back. Della beat Berg, a senior, on a shot from right in front.
Then Berg stopped shots from Della and Salazar before Shaw scored consecutive goals 45 seconds apart. Those came in the middle of the period to put the Bruins ahead 4-2.
Urbana closed the first-half scoring on a goal from TJ Harme to trim the advantage to 4-3.