For 3 1/2 quarters, No. 2 Calvert Hall contained No. 3 Loyola's Steele Stanwick about the best a high school team could.
The Virginia-bound attackman had just one assist up to that point. But there's a reason he's heralded as the best prep lacrosse player in the nation: He makes big plays at big moments.
And none was bigger than last night at Towson University's Johnny Unitas Stadium. In the second overtime of a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference semifinal, he ran right, spun left and scored with 1:50 left to give his team a 10-9 victory and a second straight berth in the final, where it will face No. 1 Gilman.
"My teammates set me up in some good positions and I did my best to just be patient with the game," said Stanwick, who scored Loyola's final three goals. "There were some openings in the defense and I just did my best to take advantage of them."
The Cardinals (16-3) were down 7-4 after halftime but stormed back late in the third quarter. They scored four straight goals, giving them an 8-7 lead midway through the fourth.
With 5:22 left, Stanwick faked a pass, ran through traffic and scored to tie the game. With 1:52 remaining, he was running right, spun back toward the goal and fired to give Loyola a 9-8 lead.
But the Dons (12-4) were whistled for interference with 32 seconds left in the game, and the Cardinals took advantage. Patrick Fanshaw (two goals) scored off a pass from Jason McFadden (three assists) to force overtime.
In the later semifinal, Gilman (18-0) held on for a 6-4 victory over No. 4 McDonogh (15-6).
The score was tied at 1 going into the second quarter. Gilman's Ty Kimball scored with 8:53 left and Jack Doyle shot a laser from 12 yards with less than two minutes left for a 3-1 halftime lead.
The Eagles' Kyle Rice scored with 38 seconds left in the third to cut the lead to one. In the fourth, Gilman's Duncan Hutchins scored and Davey Emala took a behind-the-back pass from Marcus Holman (two assists) and scored with 8:37 left for a 5-2 lead.
Rice scored to cut the lead to two. Gilman defenseman Harry Prevas took a ground ball in front of the net and scored for a 6-3 lead. Brian Hess scored for the Eagles with 3:31 left.
Gilman will face defending A Conference champion Loyola Tuesday at Towson at 7:30.
"We've wanted to get here since last year," Doyle said. "[Loyola's] the defending champs and I think we might be the underdog in that game. We'll just have to come out, play like we can and see what happens."