Incredible finishes, dominating performances, outstanding individual achievements, improbable upsets. Covering boys lacrosse, boys basketball, and boys and girls soccer was a special treat that brought plenty of those things in a memorable 2013.
In Part One of my 2013 recap, here's a look at some of the best season-long performances of 2013:
Most resilient teams
Sparrows Point's girls soccer team
Since 1999, Sparrows Point had made nine trips to the state tournament and made four championship games. What would be different in the fifth title game in 2013?
An overwhelming will to win.
The Pointers outplayed Smithsburg in the first half, but had nothing to show for their work with the game scoreless at the break. And then, with 31 minutes toplay, Smithsburg scored the game's first goal.
It could have been easy for the Pointers to think, once again, it wouldn't be their day as time got closer and closer to expiring.
Instead, they persevered. Sophomore Lindsea Webb tied the game with seven minutes left and then freshman Kasie Lambert scored with 2:16 to play. Minutes later was unrivaled jubiliation as the Pointers were state champs for the first time.
Edmondson boys basketball team
In recent years, the Red Storm have consistently been one of the finest boys basketball teams in the area, only to fall short in the playoffs because another team in its region was a tad better on a given day.
After four straight heartbreaking losses in the demanding Class 2A North region, the Red Storm finally broke through to reach the state tournament. Edmondson didn't disappoint, bringing home the program's first state championship with a thrilling 56-54 win over Wicomico.
Most impressive postseason run
Loyola lacrosse team claims improbable MIAA A Conference championship
The Dons were in the locker room following a 12-5 loss to Calvert Hall in the team's regular season finale believing they had played their final game together. Shortly after, the team learned Mount St. Joseph had upset St. Mary's in overtime to give the Dons the sixth and final seed. They ran with it.
Loyola upset third-seeded Gilman, 17-13, in the quarterfinals. Then the Dons routed second-seeded McDonogh, 13-4, in the semifinals.
Next up was No. 1 and undefeated Boys' Latin in the title game. Overcoming a six-goal deficit behind the fine play of senior attackman Devin McNamara, the Dons were able to pull off a miraculous 10-9 upset win for the program's 12th league crown.Most dominant team
The McDonogh boys soccer team
The MIAA A Conference regularly produces Division I college talent and is one of the most respected leagues in the country.
This season, the No. 1 Eagles owned it.