Losing five of its last six games — and four in a row — to archival Dulaney did not seem to phase the Towson High girls lacrosse team when it arrived in chilly and windy Timonium on Wednesday evening.
The Generals (8-1) were, in the words of Towson coach Jamie Giffiuni, ready to play "hard, fast and aggressive" to keep what is so far a banner season moving in the right direction.
By scoring on nine of its first 10 shots, Towson wiped away all thoughts of Dulaney's recent dominance and rode a strong start to a decisive 16-6 triumph for just its third victory in the last decade over the Lions (4-4).
While sophomore attacker Maggie Schneidereith may not have know about Towson's struggles in the series, she did remember the 9-6 setback to Dulaney in 2013.
"We had some fire under us because of last year," said Maggie, who, combined with quadruplet sisters Lucy, Jamie and Georgia for nine goals and three assists in the victory. "We listened to a motivational speech, too."
Although she could not come up with the name of speaker that inspired the Generals, her six-goal, three-assist performance was an indication of the speech's impact.
Schneiderieth scored the first three goals of the game, assisted on the fourth goal and scored twice more for a 6-0 advantage with 17:47 left in the opening period.
"We knew about the lefty and how good she was coming from behind the goal," Dulaney coach Kristi Korrow said. "Before we knew it, it was a five-goal deficit."
After Korrow assigned junior Patricia Stein to face-guard Schneidereith, the Towson star was limited to a goal and and a pair of assists the rest of the way.
"It's the first time we've had to face-guard this year," Korrow added.
Even so, it was too late to help the Lions crawl out of a 9-1 hole.
They did rally late in the first half on goals by junior attacker Ali Collie and sophomore midfielders Mel and Mackenzie Gandy while Towson's only rebuttal during that span was a goal by Jenny Schneidereith.
When Dulaney cut the lead to 10-5 on senior Maddie Manzoni's free position early in the second half, a comeback might have been in the offing until Maggie Schneidereith rolled the crease for her sixth goal. Goals by sophomore midfielder Catherine Della Santina, Jamie Schneidereith and senior midfielders Maddie Tribbe and Aylish Ptak made it, 15-5, with 4:10 to go and all but sealed the win.
Besides, senior goalie Hayley Hicklen's 10 saves blunted several efforts by the Lions to get back in the game.
"She's an amazing goalie," Maggie Schneidereith said. "I love playing against her in practice. She makes me be a much better shooter."
But it was Maggie's quick start that really gave Towson enough momentum to carry through the contest.
"She ate her Wheaties today," Giffuni said. "And the team finally showed a belief in itself and showed a trust in itself that only comes through preparation."
Goals: T-M. Schneidereith 6, J. Schneidereith 2, L. Schneidereith, Lockwood, Tribbe 3, Della Santina, Ptak 2 D-Dabkowski, Collie, Mel Gandy 2, Mac Gandy, Manzoni
Assists: T-M. Schneidereith 3, Tribbe, Ryan, Della Santina D-Crawford, Collie
Saves: T-Hicklen 10 D-Hine 5
Half: T 10-4
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