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Girls' lacrosse sectionals preview

Girls' lacrosse sectionals preview

Old, new rivalries renewed in Class A and B
Girls' lacrosse sectionals preview
Saratoga Springs junior Lindsey Frank scored five goals in a 14-10 semifinal win against Shenendehowa.
Photographer: ERICA MILLER/GAZETTE PHOTOGRAPHER

The Section II Class A and Class B girls' lacrosse championship games are Wednesday at Mohonasen High School.

The 4:30 p.m. Class A final is a renewal of the tournament's first large-school rivalry between Saratoga Springs and Bethlehem.

The 6:30 p.m. Class B title game is the continuation of a newer sectional rivalry between Niskayuna and Queensbury, who will clash for the fourth year in a row.

The four teams have won a total of 24 Section II championships.

Here's a few things to know going into the games.

CHAMPIONSHIP PEDIGREES

Saratoga played in every Class A (and Division I) championship game from the tournament's inception in 1992 through 2004, and earned titles every year through 1998. Each of Saratoga's title bids afterward (from 1999-2004) ended in a loss to Bethlehem. The Blue Streaks never got back to another final until this year.

The Eagles added titles in 2005 and 2006, and lost in the 2009 final to Guilderland, which was their last appearance in a final.

Niskayuna has captured eight sectional championships, all of them coming in the last 11 years, and the last three coming at Queensbury's expense. Niskayuna's 8-7 title-game win in 2017 was the closest of the three, while the Silver Warriors logged 14-6 and 11-8 wins in 2016 and 2015, respectively.

Queensbury is 1-6 in title games, winning the Class B flag in 2012.

HOW THEY GOT HERE

Saratoga (No. 1, 15-2) pulled away from a 7-7 halftime tie to beat Shenendehowa 14-10 in a semifinal game. Lindsey Frank scored five goals in the Blue Streak's seventh straight win, and second against the Plainsmen this month.

Bethlehem (No. 3, 13-4) raced to a 9-2 halftime lead and topped 2017 champ Guilderland 14-3 in its semifinal. Caroline Wise scored five goals for the Eagles, who avenged an early-season loss to Guilderland, and stopped Guilderland's run of consecutive title game appearances at 11.

Niskayuna (No. 1, 11-6) got five goals from Sydney McPartlon and four from Ava Schroeder in a 20-8 semifinal win over Columbia. Niskayuna's path to the final includes wins over Bethlehem and Guilderland, and a couple of losses to Saratoga.

Queensbury (No. 2, 13-3) beat Ballston Spa 20-6 in its semifinal, with Maddie Montgomery scoring four goals. Queensbury has produced 20 goals or more nine times as Section II's most potent squad. Queensbury beat Bethlehem by a goal just before the sectionals.

ROUND TWO

Bethlehem used an 8-2 second-half run to knock off Saratoga 14-7 on May 2 on the Eagles' field, and that was the Blue Streaks' only league loss in 12 games. Tessa Hughes had five goals and eight points to spark Bethlehem in that victory. Reilly Hogan notched three goals for Saratoga.

Niskayuna and Queensbury did not meet in the regular season.

COLLEGE BOUND

Katherine Chiarella of Bethlehem and Annabelle Conover of Niskayuna have both committed to the University at Albany, while Ava Schroeder of Niskayuna and Rachel Spaulding of Queensbury have both committed to the University of New Hampshire.

Lindsey Frank of Saratoga has committed to Richmond with plans to play both lacrosse and field hockey for the Spiders. Saratoga's Sophia Burke (Vermont), Katie Silver (Brown) and Reilly Hogan (Georgetown) are among the other title-game participants who have  made commitments.

WHAT'S NEXT

Regional semifinals at Fox Lane High School on Wednesday, May 30, against Section I champs. The Class A game is at 5 p.m. The Class B game is at 7 p.m. The regional finals are Saturday, June 2, at New Free Academy, where the Section IX champs await.

LAST YEAR'S FINALS

The Section II Class A title game had never gone to overtime before last year, when Kadi Futia's goal gave Guilderland a 9-8 win over Shenendehowa.

Niskayuna defeated Queensbury for the third year in a row in the Class B final 8-7. The Silver Warriors built an 8-5 second-half lead on consecutive goals by Erin Doyle and Sydney McPartlon and held on.

Reach Gazette Sportswriter Jim Schiltz at 518-395-3143, [email protected] or @jim_schiltz on Twitter.

 

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