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SportsHigh SchoolGirls Lacrosse

Rayna Sabella, draw dominance lift Mount Sinai girls into state final

Mount Sinai's Rayna Sabella, left, passes the ball

Mount Sinai's Rayna Sabella, left, passes the ball while pressured by Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake's Taylor Safford during the 2017 NYSPHSAA Class C girls lacrosse semifinal at SUNY Cortland in Cortland, N.Y. on Friday, June 9, 2017. Photo Credit: Adrian Kraus

CORTLAND, N.Y. — The Mount Sinai girls lacrosse team couldn’t have drawn it up any better. From start to finish, the Mustangs pushed the tempo, thanks to the work of Rayna Sabella in the draw circle. She helped Mount Sinai win 17 of 19 draws, and her three goals aided the Mustangs’ 16-1 rout of Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake in Friday’s state Class C semifinal at SUNY Cortland.

Meaghan Tyrrell had four goals and two assists and Veronica Venezia and Camryn Harloff each chipped in two goals for Mount Sinai (17-2), which will play Honeoye Falls-Lima at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow for the state title.

“We just had a really good draw plan,” Sabella said. “We know when they make adjustments on the circle or with the draw girl, we know that something’s going to be different every single time.”

Jenny Markey and Emma Tyrrell were relentless off the edge of the draw circle, chasing down draws and securing possession for Mount Sinai, which had a 23-10 shot advantage.

The Mustangs opened on an 8-0 run before Sydney Plemenik scored the lone goal for Burnt Hills (12-8). Three goals from Meaghan Tyrrell in the second half punctuated another 8-0 run for the final result.

The junior attributed the lopsided result to her teammates on the draw. “She absolutely dominated the draw today,” she said of Sabella. “She got basically every draw. If she didn’t get it, Emma or Jenny got it. She was a huge part of today’s success.”

Burnt Hills was limited to four shots on goal, with Mustangs goalie Hannah Van Middelem making three saves.

“The defense is awesome,” Sabella said. “They perform every game. They’re probably the best defense I’ve seen in high school sports.”

The combination of defense and ball control could bring Mount Sinai its third consecutive state title and fourth in five years. Honeoye Falls-Lima overcame a four-goal deficit to defeat Vestal, 8-7, and the Mustangs know a team coming off a thrilling win can be dangerous.

Said Meaghan Tyrrell, “We just really need to stay focused on tomorrow and how that’s the last game for our seniors.”

Sabella is one of eight seniors, and she said the Mustangs have had one goal all spring.

“Most people don’t even get to win one state championship,” she said. “Winning three in a row is a goal that we’ve had since the beginning of the season, so it’d be phenomenal.”

It would be just as they drew it up.

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