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Rebels win first when it counts

May 08, 2009|By CHRISTIAN WORSTELL/Staff Correspondent

Never mind that the South Hagerstown boys and girls lacrosse teams both came up winless in the regular season.

One Rebels squad is perfect in the Maryland Class 3A/2A West tournament.

Behind a five-goal night by sophomore Hunter Phillips, the South boys knocked off Kennedy 5-3 in Thursday's opening round at School Stadium.

The South girls were not as fortunate, falling 12-3 to Tuscarora in the second game of the doubleheader.

"It's the first win in two years," South boys coach David Howe said. "To get a 'W' in the playoffs is huge. It means the world."

Phillips scored 27 seconds into the contest to put South on top 1-0 and again just 14 seconds into the second quarter for a 2-0 advantage.

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"Those put us up and gave us momentum," Phillips said. "After that, everyone wanted to do well. All this team needed was some momentum to get us going."

"The last couple of games we've scored right off the bat but couldn't keep it up," Howe said.

The Cavaliers sandwiched a pair of goals around the halftime break to force a third-quarter tie but just 1:41 later, Phillips took a pass from Bobby Asper, weaved 30 yards through the middle of the field and beat Kennedy goalie Matthew Farrar in the upper corner.

The Rebels watched their lead disappear again with 8:28 left in the game when Kennedy's John Kronopoulus knotted the score at 3-3 but Phillips responded with a pair of goals just 51 seconds apart to secure the Rebels' first victory since 2007.

"The last time we won was my eighth-grade year," Phillips said. "It was just teamwork. Everyone bonded today."

"We did what we could but we couldn't take advantage when we had opportunities," Kennedy coach David Heiney-Gonzalez said, as the Cavaliers outshot the Rebels 27-21. "It could've been a different game if we could've converted some of those. South Hagerstown played a really good game. They deserved to win."

Drake Kessel logged 12 saves for the Rebels, who won 11 of the game's 12 faceoffs, including two that led directly to goals.

The Rebels play Tuscarora at School Stadium on Saturday.

In the girls game, it was Tuscarora that struck early and often. The Titans jumped to a three-goal lead in the first 2:51 of the game and led 10-1 by halftime. South's Sarah Burgan netted a pair of goals, while fellow senior Victoria Robinson rounded out the scoring for South.

"We've improved as the year has gone on, but (Tuscarora) had the offense that we couldn't counter," South coach Bruce Buhrman said. "They have speed and they catch well and between the two it was just too much."

Five players -- Stacey Kindl, Christina DiFabio, Heather Pritchard, Erika Lecuona and Jillian Kosenski -- scored twice for Tuscarora. Lindsey Beall came up with 14 saves for the Rebels.

"The teams aren't that much different," said Tuscarora assistant coach Tom Sinton, who guided the Titans to a 1-9 regular season record. "We're in building mode; we have a young team so this win was for the seniors. South played a good game and showed a lot of class."

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