SILVER SPRINGS — Whenever a game gets into a sudden-victory session, the members of the winning team will typically focus on the game-winning score.
The losing side, however, will usually rewind through a host of pivotal points in the contest that could have reversed the outcome.
Unfortunately for the York Catholic boys’ lacrosse team, their mindset after Tuesday’s District 3 Class 2-A semifinal against Hershey at Eagle View Middle School was of the latter.
After rallying to even the score at 9-9 with just 8.3 seconds left in regulation, the top-seeded Irish seemed poised to pull out a thrilling victory. That outcome seemed more likely after the YC boys stopped the Trojans before gaining possession in OT.
A questionable turnover on a clearing attempt, however, gave the Hershey boys another chance. The second time was the charm for the Trojans. Colin Kondracki found the net with just under two minutes left in the extra period, sending Hershey to the finals after a 10-9 victory.
The Irish, who have already sewn up a PIAA berth by making it to the semifinals, will battle for the No. 3 seed from District 3 in a consolation contest on Thursday. YC (17-2) will take on third-seeded Trinity (14-6) at 2 p.m. Thursday at Central York High School. Trinity lost to second-seeded Lancaster Country Day (17-3) in the other semifinal, 13-12, also in overtime.
“Unfortunately the game was decided (by that turnover), but we had a lot of opportunities,” YC coach Shane Harper said. “We could have done more than what we did and they (Hershey) played a really good game.”
Harper’s side found itself trailing throughout the contest before rallying late to force overtime. The Trojans had possession of the ball with under a minute remaining, but the Irish were able to force a pivotal turnover with 23.1 seconds left.
After a timeout, the YC boys evened things up when Brennan Witman navigated through the Hershey defense before sending a shot into the net while falling with 8.3 seconds left.
The Irish players, both on the field and on the bench, were ecstatic after Witman’s tally. At some point, however, there was a moment of discord between at least two players. Harper was forced to separate one of his players away from the huddle before overtime.
Harper wouldn't comment on what exactly transpired in that moment, but wouldn't blame the eventual outcome on the incident.
Now the Irish will have to get ready for a third-place game Thursday. YC does own a 21-8 victory over Trinity earlier this season.
“The good news is that we’re in states already,” Harper said. “We’ll play for third-place Thursday and go from there.”
Chandler Hake led YC with four goals while the Witman brothers, Cole and Brennan, each tallied a pair apiece.
No. 4 seed Hershey improved to 15-5.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at firstname.lastname@example.org.