It had been 34 days and 10 games since the South Carroll boys lacrosse team had allowed an opponent to rack up a double-digit score.
That streak came to a brutal end yesterday as Annapolis senior attacker Steve Brianas scored a game-high six goals and senior midfielder Craig Rentch whipped in four during a 13-0 run to help the No. 13 Panthers recover from a 3-1 deficit in the second quarter and rout the Cavaliers, 14-3, in a semifinal game of the Class 3A-4A state championship tournament at Catonsville Community College.
The Panthers (15-2), who won the state crown in 1994, will play Dulaney (16-3) for this year's title. The Lions beat Fallston Friday night.
"We controlled the tempo, the faceoffs, everything," said a red-faced Annapolis coach Dan Hart, who braved 90-degree heat to wear his lucky maroon warm-up suit. "We feel very good to be in the position that we're in, but this is not the goal. There's only one goal -- to win it all."
South Carroll (14-5) ran out of gas after the first half, said coach Jeff Alisauckas.
"What happened was, in the second half they had more legs than we did," said the fifth-year coach. "They [the Panthers] played an outstanding game."
The Cavaliers actually started well, as senior attacker Andrew Bettis lofted a pass to a cutting senior midfielder Mike Rabinovitz, who swatted the ball into the net for a 1-0 lead 1: 50 into the game.
Meanwhile, the Panthers could not solve South Carroll goalkeeper Nick McCready, who made eight saves -- most of the highlight-reel variety -- in the first quarter. His only mistake was a pretty goal by Brianas with 5: 51 left in the quarter.
In the second quarter, Cavaliers senior midfielder Rob Onda and senior attacker Ryan Wynne scored 74 seconds apart to give South Carroll a 3-1 lead.
Trailing 3-1 in the second quarter, Brianas powered in two goals and sophomore midfielder David Wooster and Rentch each scored one to end the first half with a 5-3 lead. The second half was all Panthers as they scored six goals in the third quarter -- three in a 1: 46 span -- and three more in the fourth.
"We were hustling and controlling everything, but we needed to shoot better," Brianas said. "Eventually, we started putting them in."
Pub Date: 5/17/98