Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/27/11
Senior Ashley Poli pumped in nine goals and added three assists and Downingtown East used a 10-0 spurt to break open the game early Thursday as the Cougars claimed their first District 1 championship by downing Garnet Valley, 22-12, at West Chester East.
The Cougars (22-1) will open Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) play Wednesday against District 1 seventh seed Upper Dublin Wednesday at a site and time to be determined.
Garnet Valley (20-3) will meet Central League rival Harriton – the District 1 No. 4 team – on Wednesday at a site and time to be determined.
The Jaguars scored the game’s first two goals, but the Cougars responded with their 10-0 run to seize a 10-2 lead with 9:48 left in the first half. Garnet Valley later cut the deficit to 12-7, but Poli scored her sixth goal of the half shortly before intermission to make it 13-7 and the Cougars kept the momentum as the second half began.
Nicole Barretta added four goals and three assists for the Cougars while McKenzie Rafferty had three goals and an assist and Emily Solenberger scored three times. Kelly Devlin had a goal and dished off an amazing nine assists and Linnea Faccenda added a goal and three assists. Haley Nelson added one goal.
Meanwhile, senior goalie Allie Murray made 13 saves as the Cougars’ defense kept the dangerous Garnet Valley attack from making a major comeback.
Halley Barnes led the Jags with five goals and an assist while AnnaElise Morello had three goals and an assist and Ally Heavens scored twice.
“It’s truly unreal, I don’t have the words to say how proud I am of everyone,” said Devlin, who Thursday was named an Under Armour All-American. “I feel so happy for what we’ve accomplished.”
Murray, who also was named an Under Armour All-American Thursday, said the Cougars played their best team game.
“It was amazing,” she said. “It was just a great team effort. I think we really bonded (in recent weeks) and learned that when we play together we can do just about anything by supporting each other.”
Solenberger said Downingtown East used good ball movement and unselfish play werte the biggest keys.
“We played well without the ball,” she said. “We made a lot of cuts and didn’t force the ball. It was good teamwork.
“Defensively, the biggest part was communication. We had to make sure everyone was organized and we helped each other on defense.”
Downingtown East 22, Garnet Valley 12
Downingtown East 13-9- 22
Garnet Valley 6-6-12
Ashley Poli 9g, 3 a
Nicole Barretta 4g, 3 a
McKenzie Rafferty 3g, 1 a
Emily Solenberger 3 g
Kelly Devlin 1g, 9 a
Linnea Faccenda 1g, 3 a
Haley Nelson 1g
Allie Murray 13 saves
Halley Barnes 5 g, 1a
AnnaElise Morello 3g, 1 a
Ally Heavens 2 g
Ashley Pyle 1g
Natalie Lang 1g