KINGSTON —The game of girls lacrosse allows for quick punches that can lead to absolute knockouts.
After being held on the ropes for 18 minutes, Wyoming Seminary came out swinging to end the first half. The Blue Knights accounted for nine goals in seven minutes to put away Delaware Valley for its third consecutive District 2 championship.
The Blue Knights won 17-4 to upend the Warriors Wednesday at Klassner Field. Wyoming Seminary advances to the PIAA play-in game to face District 4 winner Lewisburg on Wednesday, May 29 at 5 p.m. at Wilkes University’s Ralston Complex.
Unlike its two prior district championships, Wyoming Seminary had trouble early on with its opponent. The Blue Knights found their lead cut to two at 4-2 when Delaware Valley’s Dana Hunt scored off a deflected shot with an assist from Baylee Roeder at 9:02.
“I think we were a little nervous heading in,” Wyoming Seminary coach Catie Kersay said. “So I think there were a few dropped balls, working the nerves out. It’s been a good rivalry, and they’ve always given us good games every time we play them whether it’s in-season or in the playoffs. I think they were prepared for that. They knew what we were going to do on our clears, and they were putting pressure on us.”
After a long possession yielded no goals, a miscue ignited the Blue Knight offense. The Delaware Valley goalkeeper turned the ball over on the Blue Knight side of the field, allowing Emily Granger to pick off the ball and bounce it through the net to put Wyoming Seminary ahead 5-2 at 7:15.
With the help of Kristen Mericle’s seven draw controls, Wyoming Seminary was able to keep the Warriors in check for 24 minutes. Following Granger’s score, the Blue Knights went on a 12-goal run that clinched its third district title. Wyoming Seminary has advanced past the state play-in game in each of its first two appearances.
“It’s the key. Every time. If we can win the draw, we are in possession of the ball obviously,” Kersay said. “We have the momentum to make the decisions, and they have to act to us rather than us reacting to them. So that was one of the keys to the game was to either score quickly in transition or run our motion offense.”
Mericle led the Blue Knights with five goals and two assists. Amanda Schwartz contributed five goals. Emily Granger and Cat Corcoran each had two scores. Alexis Quick and Gabriel each found the back of the net once. Marra Wagner had a game-high four ground balls.
Seminary goalkeeper Kelley Gavin silenced the Warriors with nine saves. Gavin was particularly effective in the second half, thwarting several scoring opportunities.
“Every day she’s been getting better,” Kersay said of her goalkeeper. “She’s only a sophomore, and she’s been working incredibly hard all season. She has gotten so much more confident behind her stick in terms of getting out and stepping out.”
Wyoming Seminary 17, Delaware Valley 4
Delaware Valley`2`2 — 4
Wyoming Seminary`11`6 — 17
Scoring (Goals-Assists): DV Erin Corry (1-0), Dana Hunt (1-0), Elizabeth Caldwell (1-0), Emily Peters (1-0), Baylee Roeder (0-1); SEM Kristen Mericle (5-2), Amanda Schwartz (5-0), Emily Granger (2-0), Cat Corcoran (2-0), Alexis Quick (1-0), Emily Gabriel (1-0)
Saves: DV Carla Centanni 12; SEM Kelley Gavin 9
Ground balls: DV Kyra Boccio 3, Caldwell 2, Emily McKinney 2, Centanni 2, Corry, Peters, Roshni Kamta, Marisa Balcarel, Roeder; SEM Marra Wagner 4, Corcoran 3, Gabriel 3, Rebecca Schulman 2, Brittany Williams 2, Mericle, Isabella Cordaro, Schwartz, Madison Sweitzer, Gavin, Tailor Campbell,
Draw Controls: DV Boccio 3, McKinney 2, Caldwell 2, Kamta 2, Grace Cadigan 2, Balcarel 2, Jamie McElnea 2; SEM Mericle 7, Schwartz 2, Quick 2, Madison Dowd