Lawton saves day

Falcons win in 3 OTs

Sudden-death stops help defeat Liberty, 5-4

Girls lacrosse state final

May 24, 2000|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

Kim Lawton's last stand as Severna Park's goalie sparked the No. 3 Falcons to a 5-4 triple-overtime victory over No. 10 Liberty in last night's state Class 4A-3A girls lacrosse championship at UMBC Stadium.

The senior keeper made four saves in overtime, including two in sudden death, to preserve a 4-4 tie and put the Falcons (18-3) in position to win their fifth state title and their first since 1993.

In the second overtime, three minutes of sudden death, Lawton saved two Becky Trumbo shots, the last on a high free-position attempt with five seconds left."Talk about ice water in your veins," said Falcons coach Carin Peterson. "Those last two saves with everything on the line - we asked all year for our seniors to step up, and, boy, was she a leader out there."

Two other seniors then stepped up to finally end the marathon match. All-Metro defender Meg Miller dumped a pass inside to Holly Noga for the game-winner with 1:32 left in the third overtime.

Just 22 seconds earlier, Noga had bounced a free-position shot wide."I knew Holly had the opportunity on the 8-meter and she was a little upset that she missed," Miller said, "so I decided to give the ball back to her. She ran off a nice pick and was wide-open."

The goal ended a superb effort by the Lions, who were seeking their first state title. Liberty (16-3) outshot the Falcons 6-0 through the first nine minutes of overtime last night, but they could put nothing past Lawton.

In regulation, Michelle Allen gave the Lions the early lead, but Lawton made five saves in the period and the Lions didn't score again until four minutes into the second half. After Allen's goal, Lawton made a couple of point-blank saves to keep Liberty from building any momentum."When your goalie plays that well," Miller said, "you just know you have to give it right back to her. You have to play your best, because she's out there working her butt off for you. She kept us in the game many times."

Lawton's performance sparked the biggest offensive run of the longest and lowest-scoring girls game in state championship history. Jen Cielewich, Miller and Nicki Barnes gave the Falcons a 3-1 lead by halftime.

Stellar defense on both sides kept the game running at an exceptionally slow pace for the two transition-driven teams, but the Lions cut into Severna Park's lead on another Allen goal to open the second half. After Miller converted a free position, the Lions rallied behind two Trumbo goals. The sophomore converted a transition goal to tie the game with 3:14 left by slipping a high shot just inside the near post over Lawton's right shoulder.

For the Lions, who came to UMBC with two goals in mind - winning and gaining respect - they certainly accomplished the latter."We saw them beat Dulaney [14-6 in the semifinal] and people kept saying it was going to be a cakewalk for us," Peterson said. "I don't know what they were thinking. Those [Liberty] girls were very good. I'm glad I came out on top, but it's a shame they had to lose."

Girls lacrosse

State finals

(At UMBC)

Last night's result

Class 4A-3A

Severna Park 5, Liberty 4, 3OT

Tonight's game

Class 3A-2A-1A

Glenelg vs. Mount Hebron, 8

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