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Owen J. Roberts

Owen J. Roberts gains separation from Perkiomen Valley, wins 15-8

BUCKTOWN >> On March 28, the PAC girls lacrosse season kicked off with Owen J. Roberts travelling to Perkiomen Valley and posting a 10-8 victory.

Since that day, the two squads have combined for 13 consecutive conference victories.

So something had to give in Wednesday night’s return match in Bucktown. But that “something” certainly wasn’t the potent OJR offense.

The Wildcats scored the game’s first six goals, controlling play from the start in completing the regular-season sweep of PV, 15-8.

Maddie Koury struck twice in the opening minutes to get OJR (9-5, 9-0 PAC) off on the right foot. Charlotte Lasak, Kelsey Kilgallon, and Eloise Gebert added tallies to make the lead 5-0 at the midway point of the first half.

Owen J. Roberts’ Hannah Delahaye (39) takes a shot from close on Perkiomen Valley goalie Lauren Foley Wednesday. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

Meanwhile, Gebert and Sophia Murray’s dominance on draws helped the ‘Cats to control possession while making life easy on winning goaltender Cayden Jarvis.

“I think what we saw tonight was a very poised lacrosse team,” said OJR head coach Amanda Kammes. “I felt we were in control, we were confident. That’s what we want to see coming down the stretch.”

In all, the Wildcats put six goals on the board before Perkiomen Valley’s Riley McGettigan solved Jarvis with 4:32 remaining before halftime. But only one minute later, Hannah Delahaye got OJR back on track, beating PV’s Lauren Foley low to the stick side.

Perk Valley’s first-half highlight came with only seconds remaining, when the Vikings broke through OJR’s field-long defensive pressure with a couple crisp passes to the stick of Kate Hickey, who beat the buzzer and cut the Wildcats’ lead to 7-2.

After the break, however, the Wildcats reasserted their dominance, with Delahaye and Gebert each cashing in for their second goals of the evening to widen the OJR advantage to 9-2. Kilgallon would add her second to give the Wildcats their largest lead at 11-3.

When all was said and done, Kilgallon, Delahaye, and Gebert led the well-rounded OJR offense with three goals apiece, while Koury, Lasak, and Sophia Murray each tallied a pair of goals. Paige Tyson led the offense for the Vikings (9-2, 6-2 PAC) with four goals on the night.

Perkiomen Valley’s Kat Kelley (4) carries the ball in transition as Owen J. Roberts’ Sophia Murray chases. (Austin Hertzog – Digital First Media)

“They (OJR) threw a couple defenses at us we haven’t seen,” admitted PV coach Lisa Clark. “I think we were a bit frazzled as a result. But in the second half, we finished stronger.

“We’ll look at this film and see where we need to improve. We need to clean up our mental errors, and if we see them again we’ll be ready.”

The final week of the regular season will be a busy one for both squads, as both Perk Valley and OJR are locked in a battle with Boyertown and Methacton for Liberty Division supremacy. The four squads each play one another over the final week and a half (Methacton topped Boyertown 12-11 earlier Wednesday afternoon)—a de facto round robin to determine a division champion and wild-card berths into the PAC Final Four.

Wednesday night’s result puts the Wildcats firmly into the driver’s seat, but both they and Perk Valley enter the home stretch with everything up for grabs.

For OJR, the three-time defending PAC champions and state quarterfinalists in 2017, the key is peaking at the right time in order to advance deeper into the postseason.

“We’re really enjoying the game this year,” said Gebert. “Our coaches make practice fun — we have one drill that’s just screaming as loud as we can, for as long as we can.

“That’s the atmosphere they’ve created. Everyone’s become really good friends.”

Of course, the team remains goal-oriented — literally and figuratively.

“We want to have an undefeated season in the PAC, and win the championship for a fourth year in a row,” Gebert said. “We’d love to win the state title, but districts come first.

“We made the state quarters last year—we can go even further this time.”



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