By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 7/19/10
(US Lacrosse contributed to this article)
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Recent Radnor graduate Kelyn Freedman scored the game-winning goal on a free position shot with 1:21 remaining to lift Team Liberty to a 15-14 win over Team Spirit in the championship game of the Champion High School Showcase, a US Lacrosse event at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
Freedman, the Phillylacrosse.com Player of the Year and MaxPreps National Player of the Year headed to Georgetown, had two goals and two assists in the victory and was named the most valuable player for Team Liberty.
The Champion High School Showcase featured 80 of the best high school senior girls’ players in the country and teams were divided into four teams. Team Liberty dropped its
pool play opener to Team Spirit, 12-7, on Sunday before rallying to win its final three games of the tournament to claim the championship. The boys’ Champion High School Showcase begins on Tuesday evening.
Also on Freedman’s team was Upper Dublin midfielder Amy Cross (signed with Syracuse), who had two assists and two groundballs. The Liberty co-coach was Dee Cross, Amy’s mother and coach at Upper Dublin.
Team Spirit featured midfielders Camille Richardson (of Berwyn, Lawrenceville School, NJ/Columbia) and Margaret Corzel (Merion Mercy/North Carolina) and goalie Melissa Lloyd (Unionville/Penn State). Corzel had two cause turnovers and Richardson had a groundball.
In the bronze medal game, Team Pride rallied from an early 7-1 first half deficit to beat Team Freedom 15-13 in overtime. Kaitlin Mastropieri (Collegiate School, Va. – Vanderbilt) scored both of Pride’s goals in overtime and had a game-high five goals. Kara Mupo (Rocky Point High School, N.Y. – Northwestern) lead Team Freedom with four goals.
Team Pride was led by midfielder Lauren Purvis (Hatboro-Horsham), who was named the team’s MVP after collecting two goals and three assists as well as two groundballs. Also on the squad was midfielder Shannon Burns (Springfield-Delco/University of Delaware), who had an assist and a groundballl in the final game.
Freedom featured midfielder Allie Martin (Radnor/Penn), attack Courtney Campbell (Radnor/Richmond) and co-coach Wendy Landry (Unionville). Martin had an assist and two caused turnovers.
Dee Cross said in a phone interview with Phillylacrosse.com that it was a thrill to coach such standout athletes, and also her daughter for the last time in her scholastic career. She noted that Team Freedom showed remarkable team chemistry in the second day of the tourney.
“I said to Amy, ‘This is absolutely the last time I will have the chance to coach you,’” Cross said. “She said, ‘Yup.’ It was a lot of fun for me. No. 1, I had Amy on the team. And obviously, the whole experience was great.
“The improvement we saw in our team from the first time when they beat us (by five goals) to today was incredible. We watched them come together in two short days. They were great athletes and nice girls.”
Amy Cross agreed: “It was a lot of fun playing with all these new girls and getting to know them. And it’s always fun (to play for my mother). I always enjoy that, and it was great to be able to do that for my last time playing in the summer.
“I think we really started to connect. We were able to pull through. I mean everyone was so good and the games were pretty even. That made it fun playing. It was at a different level.”
In the championship game, Team Spirit led 7-5 with 7:19 left in the first half, but then Liberty went on a six-goal run over the next five minutes and eventually took an 11-8 lead at halftime. Team Spirit used a four-goal run of its own in the second half to tie the game 12-12 midway through the second half.
Team Liberty regained the lead at 14-12, but Team Spirit rallied behind the play of Taylor D’Amore. D’Amore, a Johns Hopkins recruit from Canadaigua (N.Y.) Academy, assisted on a goal by MacKenzie Cyr (Winters Mill, Md. – Penn State) and then scored the game-tying goal with 3:55 to play. Freedman then scored her game-winner for Team Liberty and later took a defensive charge with seconds left near her own goal to preserve the win.
Kathryn Webster (Christian Brothers Academy, N.Y. – Syracuse) led Team Liberty with four goals. Team Spirit was led by Liza Blue (Garrison Forest School, Md. – Virginia) with three goals and D’Amore with a goal and four assists.
Said Landry: “What an incredible experience it was to coach such elite athletes. They played with such poise and intensity. The level of play was amazing. Some of the plays the girls made were just phenomenal and made you say, ‘Wow.’”
The following players received individual awards:
Freedom: Megan McGinnis – G – Colorado Academy – California
Liberty: Katherine Sullivan – D – Garden City HS (N.Y.) – Lehigh
Pride: Erika McCool – D – Moorestown HS (N.J.) – Oregon
Spirit: Amanda Graziano – D – West Orange HS (Fla.) – Florida
Most Valuable Players
Freedom: Melanie Raso – M – Farmingdale HS (N.Y.) – Fairfield
Liberty: Kelyn Freedman – M – Radnor HS (Pa.) – Georgetown
Pride: Lauren Purvis – M – Hatboro-Horsham HS (Pa.) – Penn State
Spirit: Taylor D’Amore – M – Canadaigua Academy (N.Y.) – Johns Hopkins
Gold Medal Game Summary
LIBERTY GIRLS SCORING: GOALS: Kathryn Webster 4; Kelyn Freedman 2; Taeler
Errington 2; Shannon Mangini 2; Nicole Boltja 2; Ashlee Warner 1; Jenna Slowey
1; Shea Kusiak 1.
ASSISTS: Amy Cross 2; Kelyn Freedman 2; Ashlee Warner 1; Kathryn Webster 1;
Michelle Worthington 1.
SPIRIT GIRLS SCORING: GOALS: Elizabeth Blue 3; Lauren Sbrilli 2; Alexis Stephan
2; Taylor D’Amore 1; Mackenzie Cyr 1; Dana Boyle 1; Lauren Kahn 1; Maria Kotas
1; Meredith Donaldson 1; Melissa Carelli 1.
ASSISTS: Taylor D’Amore 4; Lauren Boland 2; Mackenzie Cyr 2; Dana Boyle 1;
Lauren Kahn 1.