By Harry Chaykun
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 4/25/15
First Conestoga saw a two-goal lead over Episcopal Academy vanish late in the second half at the Katie Samson Festival at Radnor High School Saturday afternoon.
Then Maggie Stetson made sure the Pioneers’ long winning streak didn’t go away, too. Stetson’s goal with five seconds to play lifted the second-ranked Pioneers (12-1) to a 9-8 victory over fifth-ranked EA, Conestoga’s 12th win in a row since a season-opening loss to Agnes Irwin.
“I’m not sure I’ve ever done something like that before,” said Stetson, a senior headed to Drexel. “This was a big win for us, especially knowing that that team has beaten Agnes Irwin this year.”
With her team trailing by two goals, Corinne Zanoli scored on an 8-meter shot with four minutes to play for Episcopal. Julia Hondros finished a neat crease-roll move with the tying goal 2:14 before the final whistle.
That left it up to Stetson, who put enough space between herself and a defender to get free and find the back of the cage with the game-winner.
“We knew we had to take care of the ball and save it for the last shot,” Stetson said. “We worked it around, and when I got open, Scottie Rose (Growney) got me the ball. I just knew I’d have to make that shot.”
Stetson, Sondra Dickey and Growney had two goals apiece for Conestoga, and goalies Jules Horning and Laney Stenson both made four saves. Growney’s two goals and her assist came in the second half.
“We knew how tough EA was going to be,” Growney said. “Especially after they already had beaten Agnes Irwin. We made some mistakes in the first half, but we got some turnovers and made some big plays in the second half.”
Growney, a sophomore who is committed to North Carolina, got banged up a little during the contest but didn’t seem to mind.
“You tell yourself in a game like this that you have to leave it all on the field,” she said, with a smile. “We’ve been a second-half team a lot this season. The mindset we have is that each game means a lot as far as the playoffs, so we have to do what we can to win each game.”
Which helps explain the way some very tired players pulled themselves together for that last rush, which helped them avoid having to play overtime.
“The play gets called, and you have to have people cutting to get open,” Growney said. “When it’s all over and you’ve won, you can be happy with the way the team played.”
Lily Crager had two goals and a pair of assists, and Katie Crager and Zanoli also scored twice for EA, which hosts Agnes Irwin in an important Inter-Ac League game Friday afternoon.
EA got 11 saves from goalie Sydney Gagnon against Conestoga, which visits Garnet Valley Tuesday night in an attempt to maintain its perfect record against Central League opponents.
Conestoga 9, Episcopal Academy 8
Episcopal 5 3 – 8
Conestoga 5 4 – 9
Episcopal Academy: Lily Crager 2G 2A, Corinne Zanoli 2G 1A, Katie Crager 2G, Colby Gallagher 1G, Julia Hondros 1G, Jane Crager 1A.
Conestoga: Scottie Rose Growney 2G 1A, Maggie Stetson 2G, Sondra Dickey 2G, Liz Scott 1G 1A, Rilee Scott 1G, Monica Borzillo 1G, Eliza Hacke 1A.
Saves: Sydney Gagnon (EA) 11; Jules Horning (Con) 4; Laney Stenson (Con) 4.