Leesport >> Bishop Shanahan’s memorable girls lacrosse season, which included its first-ever District 1 2A championship and Ches-Mont League title, ended Saturday with a 14-10 loss to District 3 runnerup Twin Valley in the PIAA 2A state quarterfinals.
The Eagles (16-4) jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the first eight minutes of the contest at Schuylkill Valley High School, but Twin Valley rallied to take the lead for good just before halftime.
Shanahan’s scoring was led by senior attack Olivia Murphy (four goals) and junior midfielder Ellie Udo (three goals). Both of them had a hat trick by halftime, but the Eagles trailed at that point, 7-6.
Following a lengthy post-game talk with his players, Shanahan head coach Kacy Small said, “I told them how proud I was of them. These seniors are my first four-year class, and they’ve put our program on the map, they’ve earned everybody’s respect. Winning a district championship and a league championship, and then trying to win a state championship on top of that, is not easy. It’s just not easy to win three championships in a year. I just want [our players] to understand how proud I am of them.”
The Eagles flew to a 4-1 lead behind three goals from Udo and one from Murphy, but in the following seven minutes Twin Valley rallied to tie the score at 5-5, getting two goals each from junior midfielder Jade Shearer and freshman attack Hadley Munn.
After Murphy scored her third goal of the first half to tie the score at 6-6, Twin Valley junior midfielder Julia Givens tallied with 1:30 left before halftime to put her team ahead for good.
“Their goalie [senior Ava Morrow] made a couple of big saves, and we hit a couple of pipes,” said Small. “They really picked up on their draw control game too. We just didn’t have the magic today.”
Twin Valley, who had seven different goal scorers Saturday, got a goal from sophomore attack Jessie Robinette to go ahead 8-6 two minutes into the second half, then Shanahan senior Michelle Warren scored (assisted by Udo) to cut the Raiders’ lead to 8-7.
Twin Valley then went on a 3-0 run in the next nine minutes, including the 100th career goal of junior attack Emma Raines, to take an 11-7 lead.
Warren, who will be playing for Rutgers next spring, scored her second goal of the game to cut Twin Valley’s lead to 11-8 with 12:24 to play, but that was the closest the Eagles got for the remainder of the game.
Murphy later scored her fourth goal of the game, and Shanahan junior goalie Cece Newman came up with numerous saves, but the Eagles still trailed 14-10 with 4:22 left and that’s how it ended.
“This has been a special senior class,” said Small. “We put in a lot of work in the offseason, and these girls have done it for four straight years. They did everything we asked of them four years ago, and they’ve accomplished a lot, making sure we’ve earned respect for our school and our program.
“We use a team phrase of ‘Our brand of lacrosse,’ we’ve talked a lot about for four years, and this team has built that brand 100 percent, from top to bottom. Every class after this one, we’ll follow that model, and we’ll always be able to look back to this class that really put us on the map.”
Twin Valley, in the PIAA state tournament for the first time ever, advances to play District 12 champion Archbishop Carroll in the PIAA 2A state semifinal Tuesday.
The Raiders’ offense was led by Shearer (four goals) and Munn (three goals).
“Our entire defense was fantastic today – Emma Winther, Morgan Lennon, Rachel Knight, Camrynn Owens, and our goalie, Ava Morrow,” said Twin Valley head coach Courtney Kaplan. “They shut down people and our middies that were back on defense did a really great job, too, on Shanahan’s drives.
“Anna Kaplan did a great job on the draw controls today – usually we mix it up with who handles the draw controls, but today she was sending the ball where we needed it, so she stayed at the draw control.
“I’m super happy that we won today, because our seniors graduated this morning, so it’s been a busy day for us (laughs). It’s such an awesome feeling to be going to the final four.”
Twin Valley 14, Bishop Shanahan 10
Twin Valley 7 7 – 14
Bishop Shanahan 6 4 – 10
Twin Valley goals: Shearer 4, Munn 3, Kaplan 2, Givens 2, Robinette, Raines, Gowman.
Bishop Shanahan goals: Udo 3, Murphy 4, Warren 2, Lymberis.
Goalie saves: TV – Morrow 7; BS – Newman 16.