Casey Taggart. Allie Dolder. Corinne Schmidt. Perri Baker. Those are the starting defenders on the Bay Shore girls lacrosse team. Get familiar.
Behind their signature backer zone (with some man-to-man mixed in), the Marauders beat top-seeded Ward Melville, 11-5, to capture the Suffolk Class A championship Thursday night at the Dowling Sports Complex.
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Cynthia DelCore's goal -- a sidearm bouncer -- gave Bay Shore a 2-1 lead with 20:22 left in the first half. That defense, along with goalie Dylan Teitelbaum, ensured it was one they wouldn't relinquish.
"We came in so prepared and we knew we could beat them defensively," said Taggart, so excited she literally did cartwheels after the game.
DelCore and Caroline deLyra each scored three goals to lead No. 2 Bay Shore (18-1), which lost to Northport in last year's county final. Kaitlyn Arnold and Kyra Harney each added two goals, and Teitelbaum made 12 saves.
Really, though, the Marauders' most impressive numbers were the ones that didn't appear in Ward Melville's score book.
"We tried some man defense in a scrimmage and it went well, so we used it in this game and I think we maybe caught them by surprise," Taggart said of cooling a Patriots offense that was averaging 15 goals in the playoffs. The Marauders also avenged their only loss of the season, a 10-8 defeat against Ward Melville on April 20.
A minute after DelCore's go-ahead goal, deLyra put Bay Shore up 3-1, using a series of nifty pump fakes before firing from close range.
Teitelbaum made a spectacular save of a free-position shot with 10:28 left in the first half and Bay Shore protecting a 4-3 lead. She had another on a high bullet from 8 yards three minutes later.
Ward Melville, too, was known for its stifling zone defense. The Patriots allowed just 7.05 goals per game this season, and only twice had an opponent cracked double-digits against them.
But the Marauders began to pull away late in the first half and Harney's free-position score gave them an 8-4 lead 13.4 seconds before intermission.
Yuna Hur (two goals) scored to pull Ward Melville within 8-5 with 21:23 left, but DelCore answered, and deLyra pushed the lead to 10-5 with 7:26 remaining. Emma Jehle made seven saves for the Patriots (17-2).
"Everyone's been stepping up in these past few games and we've become a force collectively," deLyra said. "When we're clicking like this, no one can stop us."