Playing with a one-goal lead and a two-man advantage late in Wednesday’s game at Dulaney, Towson’s girls lacrosse team valued possession more than a lot of goals.
The No. 15 Generals worked two or three minutes off the clock before each of their final three goals en route to an 11-9 victory over their Baltimore County rivals.
“We couldn’t waste bad shots,” Towson attacker Avery Briggs said. “We were just working for the shot. We don’t need to win by 20 goals. We just need to win, so we were just keeping the ball in our end of the field and not rushing anything.”
The Generals (6-2, 2-0) led the county Division I game, 8-7, when the Lions picked up their fourth yellow card, forcing them to play man-down the rest of the game. Two minutes later, they were given another yellow card, forcing them to play two-men down for the final 6 minutes and 47 seconds. Both cards were for checks to the head.
The Generals moved the ball around during the three minutes between Dulaney fouls before Chloe Gibson fed Briggs for a 9-7 lead with 6:33 to go.
Lilywynn Holman won the next two draws and the Generals added another goal from Briggs, who finished with three, and one from Jillian McNulty to run the lead to 11-7 with 1:38 to go.
Dulaney goalie Audrey Simoes’ 10 saves kept the Lions in the game, but coach Kristi Korrow brought her out of the cage to try to force a turnover. McNulty’s goal, on a feed from Grace Lintz, went into an empty net.
“Playing two players down, the odds are not in your favor…” Korrow said. “At that point, whether we lose by two or lose by three, it doesn’t matter, it’s still a loss, so pulling Audrey was our best shot to get the ball back. We had to do it.”
Korrow, who said she is an eternal optimist, knew that if a few draws went the Lions way, they could rally despite the odds. They did, but with time running out, the Generals had too big a lead.
The Lions (4-3, 1-1) controlled the next two draws and scored twice in the final 57 seconds. Natalie Crowley netted a free-position shot and then fed Mia Connor to cut the Lions’ lead to two, but only 21 seconds remained.
Holman won the final draw to seal the win for the Generals.
“Dulaney’s a good team and every time we play Dulaney, it’s always going to be a fight,” Towson coach Taylor Carhart said. “It’s a great rivalry and I love it, but Dulaney has the edge in it and I told my team, ‘This year, we need to find a way to win it.’”
The Generals were coming off two close games last week — a one-goal loss to defending Class 4A state champion and No. 9 Broadneck and an overtime win against Roland Park. Carhart scheduled those games in midseason to challenge the Lions and, she hopes, help them the rest of the way.
“I told my team going into the second half of the season that I believe we have a chance to go very far (in the playoffs),” Carhart said, “and I need them to believe it too. We’ve just got to find a way to win and tonight, we did.”
The game was tied at 2, 3 and 6 before Towson got back-to-back goals from Mary Claire Huebeck for an 8-6 lead.
The Lions cut it to one when Sarah Crowley drove down the middle with 12:13 to go in the game, but Briggs won the next draw and Dulaney maintained possession for most of the next 10 and a half minutes.
“We knew the momentum was on our end…” Huebeck said, “so we had to step back and realize we’re in control of this game, take it play by play and not focus on the end score as much as where we are now. I think that helped us a lot.”
The Lions played the game in honor of late Dulaney football coach Daron Reid, who passed away in February from pancreatic cancer. Reid, who coached the Lions for 10 years, was well-liked in the school community and the county football community.
The Rise Up Daron Reid Memorial Game, organized by assistant lacrosse coach Lauren Bundick, honored Reid’s family before the first draw. All proceeds from the gate as well as T-shirt sales, cookie sales, and other sales were donated to pancreatic cancer research.
“He was an incredible mentor, coach, friend,” Korrow said, “and we wanted to do something to honor him and remember him as still part of the Dulaney family.”
NO. 15 TOWSON 11, DULANEY 9
Towson 5 6 — 11
Dulaney 3 6 — 9
GOALS: T—Avery Briggs 3, Brigid Vaikness 2, Mary Claire Heubeck 2, Chloe Gibson, Jillian McNulty, Leila Mazhari, Lilywynn Holman. ; D—Natalie Crowley 3, Mia Connor 3, Sarah Crowley, Anna Jones, Heidi Schmidt.
ASSISTS: T—Brigid Vaikness, Chloe Gibson, Grace Lintz; D—Natalie Crowley 3, Mia Connor, Sarah Crowley, Anna Jones, Eve Fowler.
SAVES: T—Meghan Cottrell 0; D—Audrey Simoes 10.