SHILLINGTON – Kelyn Freedman had three goals and five assists while Sam Ellis, Ellie Kraus and Kristen Norden each tallied three goals as Radnor raced to a 16-0 halftime lead and breezed to a 23-2 victory over Manheim Township tonight in the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) girls’ lacrosse semifinals.
The victory vaults the Red Raiders (24-1) into the first PIAA championship game Saturday against Central League rival Strath Haven at HersheyPark Stadium at noon. The Panthers advanced by defeating Unionville, 16-14.
Radnor is ranked No. 1 in the state by the PA Media Lacrosse Rankings; Strath Haven is No. 2. This is the first year the PIAA has sponsored a state tournament; in the past only a District 1 tourney had been held and the winners were considered by many to be “mythical” state champs.
The Raiders – who won the District 1 Class AAA title last year while going 23-0 – settled for second place in this year’s District 1 tournament, falling to Springfield-Delco, 14-9, in the title game. They have beaten Strath Haven twice this year, 19-18 in the regular season and 20-11 in the district semifinals.
“We were 23-0 last year and lost a lot of seniors,” said Radnor coach Phyllis Kilgour, who hails from nearby Lancaster McCaskey High. “To be back at this level again this year again says a lot for this team.
“We have great chemistry. We work together really well. We do have a few stars but the whole team works well together.”
Manheim Township, the District 3 champion, fell to 20-5.
Allie Martin added two goals and three assists for Radnor while Courtney Campbell and Natalie Miller each scored twice as the Raiders outshot the Blue Streaks, 43-8. Ali Kelly, Helen Canaglia and Beasley Hays also scored for Radnor.
“I don’t think it’s a downer (to lose like that),” said Township coach Lisa Lyons. “Radnor is a tough team and we knew that coming in. They’re seventh in the country. Making this far in states is just great.
“We only graduate three seniors. I have nine of my starters back next season, this experience can only help.”
Kilgour said she believes the Central region teams will continue to improve in PIAA play.
“It’s getting stronger in Central PA,” she said. “It will be stronger if soccer goes to the fall and they can get those athletes.”
Radnor 23, Manheim Township 2
Radnor 16 7–23
Manheim Twp. 0 2-2
Radnor Scoring: Kelyn Freedman 3, Sam Ellis 3, Ellie Kraus 3, Kristen
Norden 3, Courtney Campbell 2, Alyssa Dunlap 2, Allie Martin 2, Natalie
Miller 2, Ali Kelly, Helen Caniglia, Beasley Hays.
Manheim Township Scoring: Carolyn Westphal, Molly Curcio.
Radnor Assists: Freedman 5, Martin 3, Campbell, Kelly, Norton.
Manheim Township Assists: Rachael Rosenfeld, Carly Gellrich.
Shots: R 43, MT 8.
Saves: R–Annie Woehling 3; MT–Shannon Nee 17.