Mount lacrosse moving through District 1 tourney

by Tom Utescher
Posted 5/26/21

After a relatively slow start, Mount St. Joseph Academy rolled through the rest of last Tuesday's PIAA District 1 first-round lacrosse game, defeating visiting Villa Joseph Marie, 17-3.

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Mount lacrosse moving through District 1 tourney

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After a relatively slow start, Mount St. Joseph Academy rolled through the rest of last Tuesday's PIAA District 1 first-round lacrosse game, defeating visiting Villa Joseph Marie, 17-3.

Senior Devon McGarvey led the Magic offense with five goals, and there were hat tricks for senior Maggie Woolley (a Norwood Fontbonne Academy graduate) and sophomore Ava Rossi. All three goals for the Villa Joe Jems were scored by junior Emma Hagan.

While the Jems closed out their season at 7-12 (they had gone 6-8 in the Athletic Association of Catholic Academies regular season), the Mount improved to 14-3. They had tied with Villa Maria for the Catholic Academies title after splitting head-to-head games with the Hurricanes.

Both teams were in Class 2 of the District 1 tourney, with the Mount seeded third and Villa fourth. Tuesday's win sent the Magic into a quarterfinal game against sixth seeded Jenkintown High School, which defeated number 11 Interboro High School, 12-3, in the first round.

On Tuesday, Mount head coach Dipi Bhaya had freshman Maggie Rezza take the opening draw, and she won it. Just 62 seconds into the match, Rossi got the Magic on the scoreboard, and with six minutes elapsed, Woolley made it 2-0 off an assist by Rossi.

Over the next half-dozen minutes, the Villa Joe defense held the Mount in check, and with the first-half clock down to 12:30, Coach Bhaya called time-out to try and get her Mounties moving again.

A little over two minutes after play resumed, the drought was broken by freshman Quinn Shields (sister of MSJ sophomore goalie Annie Shields), and a little later McGarvey deposited back-to-back goals. Later, after Rossi scored her second goal and McGarvey completed a first-half hat trick, the Jems called time-out with 3:30 on the clock.

For the next few minutes, it looked as though the visitors still might end the period without a goal, but junior Emma Hagan scored twice in the final 18 seconds to make it 7-2 at the break.

In the second period, a goal by MSJ's McGarvey in the opening minute was soon matched by Hagan for the Jems, but this would be the last goal scored by Villa Joseph Marie.

Less than a minute after this third goal by the visitors, the Magic had a player leave the field with a yellow card, but the Mount maintained possession of the ball through most of the penalty period.

Between 19:12 and 15:27 the hosts spread the score out to 12-3. Two goals by Woolley off assists from junior Lauren Maher were sandwiched around a marker by Rossi on a lateral move across the front of the crease. The fourth goal of this Mount burst was McGarvey's fifth of the day.

The last five MSJ goals were spread out over the last 11 minutes, starting with a free position conversion by sophomore Molly Brennan. Junior Campbell Donovan (another Norwood alum), who had assisted on Rossi's goal a little earlier, also scored off of a restart. Following consecutive goals by senior Katelyn O'Connor, the final tally went on the board when Rezza, the freshman midfielder, found the net with five seconds remaining.

UPDATE: The Mount won its second-round game over Jenkintown, 14-5, setting up a District semifinal meeting with second-seeded Strath Haven High School.

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