The Kennard-Dale girls' lacrosse team lost to visitin Manheim Township, 16-6. Elijah Armold, York Dispatch
FAWN GROVE — Things had been going quite well for Kelly Wetzel and his Kennard-Dale girls’ lacrosse team recently.
Perhaps a little too well.
The Rams entered Wednesday’s contest with visiting powerhouse Manheim Township with a nearly unblemished record. Kennard-Dale hadn’t lost in a nearly a month, riding an 11-game winning streak that began after the team's lone setback of the season — an overtime defeat to York-Adams League rival Susquehannock on the road in terrible weather conditions.
With the weather finally having shifted to spring and the postseason looming, Wetzel’s team was served a "wake-up call" that reminded the Rams that, while the weather is kinder, the road ahead is far from kind.
After a tight battle early, Kennard-Dale (13-2) got a quick refresher on the high-octane offenses that await come playoff time. The Blue Streaks used a long scoring run to pull away for a 16-6 victory. The win keeps Manheim Township perfect on the year at 17-0.
The Rams entered play Wednesday atop the District 3 Class 2-A power ratings. Township came in sitting in second in the 3-A ratings.
“It’s a bit of a wake-up call. There are some things we need to work on,” Wetzel said. “We did OK on the draw, we just have to execute more on offense. I think it’s a good thing. We were without a defender, and I don’t think it made a whole lot of difference as far as what (Manheim Township is) capable of. They’re phenomenal.”
Key Streaks run: The Rams' reminder of the type of quick-strike attack that has made the Blue Streaks a dominant District 3 force started midway through the first half after K-D had pulled to within two of its guests, 5-3.
Township’s Shannon Elias intercepted a Rams pass and, as the Streaks did throughout most of the game, quickly sprinted up the field and crisply sent a series passes around before Maris Large scored to put the visitors ahead 6-3 with 5:59 left before halftime.
It would kick off a 8-0 run for Township that extended into the second half. The scoring spree culminated with 12:36 left to play when the Streaks again were on a fast break. After Rams goalie Maria Schneider stopped the initial attempt, Taylor Kopan was there for the first of her three goals to put the Streaks ahead 13-3 and start the running clock.
Standout performer: The Rams were also reminded that talented teams often feature a top-notch scoring talent who easily stands out from the rest. For the Streaks, that player was Lizzie McBride, who not only made the Rams take notice with a four-goal, three-assist effort, but also with her exceptional height.
McBride, often head and shoulders above most on the field, was a slashing menace for the Rams' defense. She cut through the heart of it to either fire a shot or provide a quick dish to another swift-moving teammate.
Wetzel pleased with effort: While the game quickly got way from his club, Wetzel was still pleased by the level of effort his team showed.
“Lots of hustle. They didn’t give up. They were tired,” Wetzel said. “We were exhausted at the end and they just had fresh legs and they could run. … We have a lot of things we can improve on if we embrace it and take advantage of it.”
Some positives: Another bright spot for K-D was its ability to take advantage of early Township mistakes. K-D scored four of its goals after Streaks infractions. Schneider was also a positive for the Rams. She made six first-half saves that kept the game competitive and finished with 13.
Amelie Gamache scored two goals to lead the Rams, while teammate Megan Halczuk added a goal and an assist.
Coming up: Next up for the Rams is a Thursday contest with Dover to wrap up the regular season. The Y-A tournament follows next week, and the defending-champion Rams will enter as the tournament’s second seed.
“Play it one game at a time. Lots to work on between Dover and (the start of the Y-A tournament),” Wetzel said.
West York 8, York Suburban 7: At West York, the Bulldogs grabbed the win behind six goals from Syndey Sweitzer and two from Holly Detwiler. Suburban was paced by Kamille Wasilewski's three goals. Reilly Dearolf made 12 saves to get the win in goal.
Reach Elijah Armold at email@example.com.