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Spring-Ford, Owen J. Roberts aim to maintain stronghold on PAC boys lacrosse final

The first 10 years of the Pioneer Athletic Conference boys lacrosse semifinals have always had the same result.

Six-time defending champion Spring-Ford and Owen J. Roberts boys lacrosse teams have been the kings of the league’s first decade of boys lacrosse, meeting in every championship game since its 2007 inception.

Tuesday night, Perkiomen Valley and Boyertown hope a new decade brings a new trend.

No. 1 seed Spring-Ford and No. 4 Boyertown open Tuesday’s PAC semifinal doubleheader at Owen J. Roberts (South field) at 5:30 p.m. In the nightcap, No. 3 Owen J. Roberts hosts No. 2 Perkiomen Valley, set for 7:30 p.m.

The winners meet Thursday back at Owen J. Roberts (Wildcat Stadium) at 7 p.m. in the second game of the PAC girls-boys lacrosse championship doubleheader.

Spring-Ford’s Dan Cassidy looks to advance the ball while he is pressured by the Owen J. Roberts’ defense Friday. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

Perkiomen Valley’s Brian Fehr (10) dives toward Boyertown’s Dan Yednock as he crosses the midline during their PAC boys lacrosse game Thursday at Boyertown. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

No. 4 Boyertown vs. No. 1 Spring-Ford

Records: Boyertown, 6-3 PAC, 9-9 overall, No. 21 in District 1-AAA power rankings; Spring-Ford, 9-0 PAC, 14-2 overall, No. 4 in District 1-AAA power rankings

Head-to-head: Spring-Ford defeated Boyertown 12-1 on April 24. Jarrod Marenger had two goals and five assists while Tate Pijanowski scored three goals to lead the Rams.

Boyertown at a glance: The Bears make their second straight PAC playoff appearance, this time under first-year coach Grady Wise. … The 9-9 Bears are 2-5 in their last seven. Their three league defeats are to each of the other playoff qualifiers … The Bears are led by senior long stick midfielder Dan Yednock, defender Grayson Hamrick, attackman Brady McFalls, attackman Jason Clinton (recent returnee from hand injury), midfielder Nick Moccia, attackman Mason Turner and goalie Mark Fredrickson.

Spring-Ford at a glance: The six-time defending PAC champions have become the league’s gold standard having not lost a PAC contest since April 3, 2013. … At 14-2, the Rams’ season features wins over District 1 top-ranked Avon Grove (9-8 OT on April 1) and Radnor (7-6 on March 24). Their losses came against 1-AA No. 1 Springfield-Delco (13-5 on April 8) and 1-AAA No. 5 Garnet Valley (12-8 on April 29). … The Rams, under longtime coach Kevin Donnelly, are led by midfielder Danny Cassidy, attackmen Marenger, Pijanowski and Peyton Gensler, midfielder Ryan Rosenblum, defenseman Tanner Romano and goalie Kyle Pettine.

Prediction: Boyertown hasn’t had the flow it would like late in the season, which is no way to go into a matchup with the Rams. Spring-Ford 13, Boyertown 3.

Owen J. Roberts’ Mike Glandonato (23) and the rest of the Wildcats congratulate goalie J.C. Capaldo after defeating Perkiomen Valley 11-8 in the PAC semifinals Tuesday. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

No. 2 Perkiomen Valley at No. 3 Owen J. Roberts

Records: Perkiomen Valley 8-1 PAC, 13-4 overall, District 1-AAA No. 8 ranked; Owen J. Roberts 7-2 PAC, 9-7 overall, District 1-AAA No. 14 ranked.

Head-to-head: Perk Valley defeated Owen J. Roberts 9-3 on April 11. A 2-1 game at halftime turned into a runaway Vikings win with Shawn Coulter (three goals, two assists) and Matt Dudley (two goals) leading the way. It was PV’s first win over OJR since a 14-5 win on April 23, 2014 after losing eight straight.

Perkiomen Valley’s Matthew Dudley is surrounded by his teammates after scoring a goal during Thursday’s game against Perkiomen Valley. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

Perkiomen Valley at a glance: At 13-4, coach Bryan Churchey’s senior-led Vikings are having their best season in the Pioneer Athletic Conference era. Their marquee wins are the OJR result and a 6-5 win over Haverford High on April 13. … PV is led by midfielders Coulter, Dudley, Brian Fehr and Richie Marshall, defenders Nick Marren and Connor Willey, long-stick midfielder Remy Sell and goalie Kevin Mo.

Owen J. Roberts at a glance: The Wildcats have won seven of eight entering the playoffs, finding better form since a 3-6 start under first-year coach Ben Carville’s system … OJR is led by attackmen Joey Tordone, Logan Clefisch and Evan Massa, midfielders Noah Calle and Austin Koury and goalie JC Capaldo.

Prediction: PV-OJR has developed into one of the area’s best rivalries, but the Wildcats have always found a way to come out on top in the playoff meetings. Tuesday night expects to be closer than April 11 with a more comfortable OJR team, possibly even a one-goal game. But it’s finally Perkiomen Valley’s time … Perkiomen Valley 7, Owen J. Roberts 6.

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