By Harry Chaykun
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 4/30/13
Junior Kate Stanley and senior Grace Collins weren’t the only Radnor players who had a hand in the Red Raiders’ 9-8 Central League victory over Springfield-Delco at Halderman Field Tuesday afternoon.
Stanley and Collins just happened to make their biggest contributions in the closing minutes as Radnor (10-3, 7-2) knocked Springfield (11-3, 7-2) out of a share for first place with Harriton and halted the Cougars’ five-game Central winning streak.
Stanley’s goal with 4:38 to play broke an 8-8 tie. With 39 seconds left, Collins, who rebounded from first-half struggles in goal, turned away Rachel Charamella’s attempt to tie the score with one of her most-memorable saves of the season.
“The first half wasn’t my best,” said Collins, who will play next spring at the University of Michigan.
In the first 25 minutes, Springfield took only six shots at Collins. Five got behind her and one hit the goal post. Emily Santana and Alex Poplawski both scored twice to give the Cougars the advantage at halftime, 5-4. Shannon Quinn got two goals for Radnor, and Sydney Cowles converted a feed from Lyndsey Britton for a big Red Raiders score four seconds before the half ended.
During the break, Cowles did her best to convince her teammates that they didn’t want to face the long ride home after a loss in a key league game.
“I told them we weren’t going to leave this field thinking about how things might have been different if we were playing at our field or anything else like that,” Cowles, who is headed to Bates to play field hockey and lacrosse, said. “This game could help make a difference in whether or not we could be a team that could be playing in Hershey (for the state title in June).”
Springfield got two of the first three goals of the second half, then scored only once in the last 20 minutes. That goal, by freshman Cailyn Gormley, put the Cougars up, 8-7, with 9:34 to play. Radnor answered four minutes later, as Shannon Quinn, who had a free-position shot turned away by Cougars goalie Courtney O’Connell (9 saves), claimed the rebound from her shot and got it past O’Connell. A minute later, Stanley placed an 8-meter shot behind O’Connell for the winning goal.
“The coaches had been saying to think middle-low,” Stanley said. “So I just tried to zone everything out and take my shot. I didn’t think about it like (it would be the winning goal. There was still so much time left.
“We have to shoot against Grace each day when we practice, and she seems to stop everything. That sounds bad for our attack, especially if you get down on yourself. But she really does help us.”
Collins helped scramble the Central League standings a little more with her play down the stretch. She had stopped a shot with her team trailing by one goal with 15 minutes to play. After Stanley’s goal, Shannon Quinn earned the draw control for Radnor, which ran plenty of time off the clock before turning the ball over.
The Red Raiders went one player down on a yellow card foul with 55 seconds left. Springfield’s Charamella took what looked like a game-tying shot with 39 seconds to go, but Collins made the save.
“It was a crease roll around the goal,” Collins said. “I was trying to get my feet around, and I knew it was non-stick side. I just put my hand out and made the save.”
That might have saved Radnor’s season, but nobody wearing a Red Raiders uniform, coaching on the sideline or cheering from the stands could breathe easy until a a last-second shot by Poplawski sailed over Collins’ head just before the final whistle.
“I kept saying ‘just give us one save Grace,’” Radnor head coach Brooke Fritz said. “Just one save, and she did it.
“This Central League is really something. The thing is we’re doing all this, then we’re going to be seeing each other again in districts and in states.”
Radnor 9, Springfield-Delco 8
Radnor 4 5 – 9
Springfield-Delco 5 3 – 8
Radnor – Shannon Quinn 4G, Kate Stanley 2G, Sydney Cowles 1G 1A, Kaelee Helms 1G, Taylor Quinn 1G, Sara Curley 2A, Brooke Pancoast 1A, Lyndsey Britton 1A.
Springfield-Delco – Emily Santana 3G, Alex Poplawski 2G, Cailyn Gormley 2G, Aly Gormley 1G 1A, Rachel Charamella 2A.
Saves – Radnor: Grace Collins 3. Springfield (Delco) Courtney O’Connell 9.