By Harry Chaykun
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/21/15
Lucy Haubold and the other Great Valley seniors were in second grade when the Patriots won the 2005 District 1 Class AA championship.
Haubold and a host of Patriots defenders teamed up with sophomore goalie Mia Tornetta Thursday night to help No. 4 seed Great Valley (20-3) earn its seventh consecutive victory with a 7-4 decision over No. 3 Harriton (19-4) in the 2015 District 1 championship contest at West Chester East High’s Zimmerman Stadium.
“I wouldn’t want to play with any other group of people,” Haubold said.
The win halted the Rams’ 12-game winning streak and was the Patriots’ second victory of the postseason against a Central League opponent – No. 1 seed Conestoga was the victim in the semifinal round Tuesday – after three losses in as many starts to Central teams in the regular season.
Great Valley (20-3) will open state tournament play against the third-place team from District 3 Wednesday while Harriton (19-4) will face District 4 champion Danville.
“Our defense has gotten better and they played a beautiful game,” said Mia Tornetta, who made eight saves. “We just wanted to win so badly, and I’m really very happy how this game turned out.”
Natalie Kahn, Olivia Muscella and Stephanie Aker scored goals in the opening half to offset scores by Alex Ladda and Jane Henderson and give GV a 3-2 edge at halftime.
Henderson tied the score 1:45 into the second half, but three minutes later she was issued her second yellow card and spent the rest of the game on the sideline.
“That wasn’t a call that should have had a yellow card,” Rams head coach George Dick said. “But that’s all I want to say about that. They put together a great game plan, and congratulations to them.”
While Harriton was short-handed following the second Henderson card, junior Linnea Hughes put Great Valley ahead on an 8-meter shot. Just under four minutes later, she finished a play started by Ashlyn Smith to give the Patriots a two-goal advantage.
When Muscella fired in an 8-meter shot a minute and half later, the Patriots had built their margin to three goals.
“None of our goals are done single-handed,” Hughes said. “We knew the way they played defense we would have to have a team effort in this game. You work for one goal at a time, and you know if you can keep the ball, you can win the game.”
Harriton freshman Greta Stahl cut into the Great Valley lead with 12 percent minutes to play, but Courtney Cortese close out the scoring two minutes later for the Pats.
Then it was up to Tornetta and her defenders, including Haubold, Brooke Lionetti, Isabelle Bonelli, Kodi Campetti and Megan D’Ginto. to hold Harriton off the scoreboard for the final 11 minutes.
“We came off a big win over Conestoga, and we wanted to keep going,” said Haubold, who will study bio-medical engineering and attempt to make the team at Penn State as a walk-on next year.
“We play together, and we know we have Mia backing us up.”
Kim Wenger, who took over as head coach this spring after two years as an assistant at Great Valley, was proud of the effort she got from everyone on her squad.
“I’m very happy with the way things went,” Wenger said. “(Hughes) has showed up in every big game we’ve had this year.
“It’s just been great. And now we have to get ready for the state tournament.”
Great Valley 7, Harriton 4
Great Valley: 3 4 – 7
Harriton: 2 2 – 4
Great Valley: Olivia Muscella 2G 1A, Linnea Hughes 2G, Natalie Kahn 1G, Courtney Cortese 1G, Stephanie Aker 1G, Kristen Knaff 1A, Ashlyn Smith 1A.
Harriton: Jane Henderson 2G, Alex Ladda 1G 1A, Greta Stahl 1G, Laura Lasprogata 1A.
Saves: Mia Tornetta (GV) 8; Devin McClain (Harr) 6.