A decade-long streak is over.
Second-seeded Sacred Heart displayed an all-around performance against top-seeded St. Anthony’s in Thursday night’s CHSAA Class AA championship game at Adelphi’s Motamed Field, riding a wave of contributions from up and down the roster in an 11-6 win.
St. Anthony’s had won each of the last 10 CHSAA titles and seemed primed to win again after capturing two regular-season victories over the Spartans. But Clare Casey, who returned this spring from an ACL injury she sustained last season, made sure Sacred Heart could start a streak of its own.
The senior had four goals and lifted the Spartans to the CHSAA title they’ve chased for several years. Arden Tierney added two goals and three assists, including a tally with 9.3 seconds before halftime that gave her side a 7-3 lead.
That capped a dominant first half for Sacred Heart (14-5), which held an 8-3 draw advantage at the break. That possession time resulted in a persistent offensive attack that produced 14 first-half shots. St. Anthony’s managed just five because defenders like Claire Carney helped contain the dynamic offense.
But St. Anthony’s (14-4) continued to hang around. A young team with just three seniors (Sabrina Pavlin, Bella Palagonia and Elizabeth Pawlak), the Friars have relied on their energetic youth all season. They produced in big spots, as Katie DeSimone (four goals) took a pass from Charlotte Verhulst and buried it with 15:25 left in the second half, cutting the Sacred Heart lead to 8-6.
Sacred Heart played patient offense on its next two possessions in an effort to kill clock. The first possession resulted in a turnover, but Casey ensured the next trip down the field was productive. She took a feed from Tierney behind the cage and scored for a 9-6 lead. Emma Cashwell’s free position later gave the Spartans an 11-6 lead with 6:17 remaining.
OLMA wins Class A crown
No. 1 Our Lady of Mercy defeated No. 3 Holy Trinity, 7-3, in the CHSAA Class A championship game at Motamed Field behind Lindsey Dean, who scored consecutive goals in the second half to extend OLMA’s lead to 7-2. Holy Trinity (6-12) tied the score at 2 early in the second half before OLMA (11-6) took control. Kendall Fressle (two goals, one assist) was named the CHSAA Class A Player of the Year, and Maggie McGovern made eight saves, including three in the final five minutes. The Mustangs have won two straight Class A titles.