What an amazing season it has been for two talented Philadelphia Catholic League lacrosse rivals, the Cardinal O’Hara Lady Lions and the Archbishop Carroll Lady Patriots.
Over the past 12 years Archbishop Carroll has dominated in girls’ lacrosse. Carroll head coach Lorraine Beers took over the girls’ lacrosse program in 2000, and the team has made it to the championship round every year of her coaching tenure.
In 2000, the Lady Patriots lost by one point to St. Hubert’s in the championship game but have been able to clinch the championship ever since.
They also have not lost a single Catholic League game in the regular season or the playoffs in more than a decade.
This year was no exception for Carroll. The Lady Patriots and the third-seeded Cardinal O’Hara Lady Lions faced each other in the Philadelphia Catholic League championship game May 23 at Neumann University.
After taking a 12-0 lead in the first period, Carroll ultimately dominated O’Hara, 19-3, for its 12th consecutive league title.
A number of Lady Patriots contributed in the title game. Junior midfielder Natalie Schmitt found the net first and went on to lead the way with five goals.
Junior attack Rachel Flynn secured a hat trick. Sophomore midfielder Megan Santolieri, senior attack Gabbi Hull, senior midfielder Kerry Newby and freshman attack/midfielder Natalie Schmitt all scored twice.
Senior goalkeeper Katie Boyle (committed to Holy Cross College) and junior goalkeeper Hayley Joyce combined for five saves in goal.
“They’ll be going to college to play lacrosse,” Beers said. “They’re really good.”
With the victory, the Lady Patriots advanced to the District 12 championship to play the Public League champion, Philadelphia High School for Girls.
Girls High defeated George Washington High School, 6-4, in the Public League championship game.
Nerves were the one thing that really got the best of O’Hara players during the first half.
“First halves have everything to do with nerves,” said Cardinal O’Hara head coach Lesley Ferriola. “Carroll has a fast group of girls. We couldn’t keep up.”
Sophomore center Sam Amicone, freshman Chelsea Fox and junior Kasey Jones tallied goals for the Lady Lions. Sophomore goalkeeper Kerry McCanns had five saves.
“She did well,” Ferriola said. “The defenders got down on themselves. We have great defense.”
Carroll will now move on to the state tournament slated to begin Wednesday, May 30.