Playing against a team coming off a big win just two days ago, it was imperative for the Severna Park girls lacrosse team to get off to a fast start on Wednesday.
The Falcons did just that, and then some.
Severna Park won the game’s first eight draws and scored the first five goals on its way to a 16-6 victory over Broadneck on Wednesday in the Class 4A East Region final.
Severna Park (17-1) won its 17th region title and third since 2015. The Falcons will play Walt Whitman in a state semifinal on Friday or Saturday at Gaithersburg High School. The Falcons haven’t lost in their previous 16 state semifinal appearances.
“We heard going in that Broadneck dominated on the draw against South River, so we knew that was going to be huge,” Severna Park coach Kaitlyn Hines said. “If you can’t win the draw, it’s hard to get the ball. Draws were huge.”
The first five draw controls led directly to the Falcons’ first five goals, which came from five different players. After the Bruins got on the board at the 7:34 mark of the first, the Falcons added three for an 8-1 lead and went into halftime with an 8-2 advantage.
Hunter Chadwick scored three goals in the first half and finished with four goals and an assist.
“A lot of it was really just moving the ball,” said Chadwick, the Falcons’ leading scorer this season. “We’ve been working on moving the ball and getting fast transitions.”
Haliey Blachly scored two goals in each half and also finished with four goals and an assist, while Kailyn McCulloch and Cam Chew each added two goals for Severna Park, which is shooting for its 14th state title. The Falcons won their last crown in 2015 when Hines was a first-year coach and fell to Bel Air in the state final two years later.
“It’s a really good feeling. I don’t think it’s really set in yet,” Hines said. “We take every game as a gift, nothing’s handed to us. It’s nice to get back there.”
Haley Betch had a goal and two assists, Maddy Brady scored once and assisted on another and Thersea Bragg and Kayla Minton each added goals for the Falcons.
As they’ve done all year, the Falcons once again held their opponent to single-digits in goals, led by the defense of Rachel Spilker, Kate Bray, Sophie Grazioli and Kaila Stasulli in front of goalie Delaney Ott (nine saves).
“My rock-solid defense on top of having Delaney in the cage just speaks volumes of the entire team,” Hines said. “They’ve really just locked things down for us.”
Alexis Sullivan scored three goals, Sammy Dupcak added a pair, Haley Palmer scored and Kaala Puglisi had three assists for the Bruins, who knocked off defending state champion South River on Monday to advance to Wednesday’s region final.
“They were much quicker on the draw than we were,” Broadneck coach Katy Kelley said. “I think it was hard coming off of a huge win. I could tell in warm-ups we didn’t quite have the energy we had Monday night.”
The Bruins have a large senior class, many who are going on to play lacrosse or field hockey at the next level.