'Exhausted' Liberty crushed by Mount Hebron, 20-5


ELLICOTT CITY -- Maybe it was Monday night's draining, double-overtime win at Liberty, or perhaps the North Carroll girls lacrosse team was simply overmatched by top-seeded and unbeaten Mount Hebron yesterday afternoon.

It was likely the latter, as Mount Hebron had little trouble disposing of North Carroll, handing the Panthers a 20-5 loss in the Class 1A/2A Region I finals Tuesday.

North Carroll finished its season at 8-6, while Mount Hebron advanced to the state tournament unbeaten at 15-0.

The Vikings took control early, charging to an 8-0 lead in the first eight minutes.

"They were definitely the better team today," North Carroll coach Stacy Abeles said.

"It's tough playing on back-to-back days, and getting behind so early really drained us mentally. It's really tough coming back from that kind of deficit.

"[Monday] was the highlight of our season [15-14 win at Liberty]. We gave it everything we had Monday and were really physically exhausted today. It would have been nice to go on, but it wasn't there."

Mount Hebron had four days to rest after defeating Glenelg, 20-7, in its region semifinal on Friday. North Carroll's contest against Liberty was postponed from Friday until Monday because of thunderstorms.

North Carroll's one sign of life came midway through the first half, when Gina Christiani and Amy Eggers scored back-to-back goals to cut the lead to 8-2. But Mount Hebron scored seven of the next eight goals to take a 15-3 halftime lead. North Carroll never threatened to make a game of it in the second half.

"They had a very strong attack, but I definitely feel they can be scored on," Abeles said. "We got down early and failed to capitalize on some opportunities offensively."

Eggers and Tami Giffi led North Carroll with two goals each. Giffi had nine goals the past two days.

Megan Drake led the winners with seven goals, while Lori Pasquantonio added five.

Carrie Hale had a busy day in the North Carroll goal, turning back 16 Mount Hebron shots.

North Carroll's win Monday against county-rival Liberty was the first for the Panthers against Liberty this season. They lost two regular-season meetings against the county champion Lions.

Monday's contest was a classic.

The Panthers overcame a number of Liberty leads and saw a lead of their own disappear. Liberty jumped out to a 3-0 lead

early and took a 6-5 lead at the half.

Giffi's seventh goal of the game gave the Panthers a 13-11 lead late in regulation, but the Lions rallied behind Megan Horneman's two goals.

Both teams scored in the first overtime, setting the stage for Danielle Miller's fifth goal of the game with 21 seconds left in the second overtime.

Val Swomley, Tracy Bantel and Horneman each scored three times for Liberty, which finished its season at 10-3.

In Class 3A/4A, Region I boys semifinal action Monday, a fourth-quarter rally wasn't enough as South Carroll's season came to an end with a 9-4 loss at Centennial.

The Cavaliers lived and died by their defense all season long. Their lack of offense was evident Monday, and the defense couldn't bail them out this time.

The Cavs trailed, 6-1, at the start of the fourth quarter but cut the deficit to 6-4 with just over three minutes left before Centennial scored the game's last three goals.

Brad Blizzard scored a pair of goals, while Donny Pyles and Jeremy Russin each scored once for the Cavaliers, who finished the season at 10-3.

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