Senior midfielder Matt Mindel had five goals and an assist, and three others scored three times to lead No. 9 Dulaney to a 17-8 victory over No. 13 Fallston in a Class 4A-3A boys lacrosse state semifinal last night at Severna Park.
The two-time defending state champion Lions (14-2), who won their 14th straight, will go for their fifth state title since 1990 against the winner of tonight's Severna Park-Churchill semifinal on Tuesday or Wednesday at UMBC; the time is to be announced.
Mindel also was a force on faceoffs, constantly winning possession for the Lions. Dulaney, which led 3-0 before Fallston (13-5) gained possession, was up by as many as 10 goals. The Lions scored the game's first five goals in 5:50, outshot Fallston 15-4 in the first quarter and led 9-2 after sophomore attackman Will Englehart (one goal, one assist) scored with 3:42 to play in the half.
"Winning the possession early is a key to the game," said Mindel, who entered the game with 113 ground balls this season. "It's the key to our team. If we hold possession, our team can score. We've got one of the best attacks in the area, and we've got great midfielders. I just fight for every ground ball."
Dulaney leading scorer Kyle Batton, senior attack Mike Obringer and junior midfielder Greg Naylor each scored three goals. Batton, a junior attackman, has 78 goals this season.
For the Cougars, senior attackman Mike Byrne scored four goals, senior attackman Mike Wade recorded three goals and two assists and senior attack Steve Mull dished out three assists. But Fallston, the defending 3A-2A state champion that reached the semifinals by way of two dramatic one-goal victories on consecutive days over Westminster and C. Milton Wright, was outclassed.
The Cougars did close to within 9-4 at halftime, but Dulaney started the second half with three straight goals in just over three minutes.
"We were a little bit impatient with our shots," Dulaney coach Gary Schreiber said. "We slowed it down a little bit at the beginning of the second half and just waited for good shots. I told them [that] we had a five-goal lead. If it took 20 minutes to get a shot, that's OK."