GLEN ROCK — The Susquehannock girls’ lacrosse team had a remarkable run to the 2017 District 3 Class 2-A championship.
A season later, the Warrior girls are hoping to follow in the footsteps of last year’s squad.
So far, so good.
Last year, the Susquehannock girls defeated West York in the first round before downing Cocalico in the quarterfinals. This week, after shutting out the Bulldogs in the opening round, the Warriors were again paired with Eagles.
While it wasn't quite as dominating an effort as a season ago, the defending 2-A champs were able to edge Cocalico, 10-6, Thursday evening on their home turf. The win clinched a PIAA 2-A state berth for the Warriors.
The top-seeded Warriors, who improved to 18-3 with the victory, will face No. 4 Wyomissing (16-4) in the semifinals on Tuesday, May 22, at a time and location to be determined. The Spartans knocked off Lampeter-Strasburg, 13-10, in a quarterfinal pairing Thursday.
“It’s kind of crazy that our first two games last year were against the same two teams we faced this year,” Susquehannock coach Steve Marshner said. “In the exact same rounds, one and two. And I’ll take last year’s results.”
The Warriors, who defeated Cocalico 22-10 last year, claimed the program’s first-ever District 3 title in 2017. While that run was certainly not easy, repeating the feat this year figures to be even more difficult.
The Eagles gave Marshner’s club all that it could handle at times on Thursday. That resulted in a much closer margin of victory compared to 2017.
For Marshner, however, that is a good thing for his squad.
“This team was much more solid and much better than they were last year,” he said. “That’s a very good team that’s been on a winning streak outside of their (loss) to Manheim Township. They were a lot more physical than I expected them to be and I’m saying that we needed to see that. They put a lot of pressure on us all over the field and we turned the ball over, but when it came down to it, we made the plays when we had to. This was a great team for us to play right now.”
The Warriors rode a wave of energy and emotion to the district title a season ago. Marshner is still hoping to see some of those same characteristics from his club this year.
“Last year, we were little more ‘rah-rah,’ which is what got us going,” Marshner said. “This year it’s not as much of that, but they know where they have to be and they know what they have to do.”
Emma Stiffler led the offensive charge for the Warriors. The senior finished with a career-high five goals to go along with a pair of assists.
“I’m normally more of an assister,” Stiffler said. “I like to be more of the one that creates the offense, but I step up when I need to.”
Stiffler and Marshner know that will be the case come Tuesday against a Wyomissing side that handed the Warriors one of their three losses on the campaign.
“When we played them, they taught us a lot of things,” Marshner said. “They beat us 14-7, so we know what we have in store. They have a girl, No. 14 (junior Joanna Helm), whose going to Vanderbilt. She’s a great player and a great team player.”
Kennard-Dale 13, Lancaster Country Day 12 (OT): At North Harford, Maryland, the Rams roared back from a 10-3 halftime deficit for an overtime victory in a District 3 Class 2-A quarterfinal.
The victory clinched a PIAA 2-A state playoff berth for the Rams. Mackenzie Young scored the game-winner with 46 seconds left in the first OT. Young finished with two goals and four assists.
K-D's other scoring leaders were Morgan Bowings (four goals, assist), Megan Halczuk (three goals, two assists) and Maddie Day (three goals).
Third-seeded K-D improved to 18-2. Sixth-seeded LCD saw its season end in heartbreaking fashion and finished 13-6.
The Rams now advance to the district semifinals on Tuesday against second-seeded Hershey.
Exeter 17, Central York 9: At Exeter, the sixth-seeded Panthers got knocked out of the District 3 Class 3-A playoffs in the quarterfinal round, ending their season at 12-7.
Third-seeded Exeter improved to 16-12.
Hershey 16, York Catholic 10: At Hershey, York Catholic's season ended with a District 3 Class 2-A quarterfinal setback.
The seventh-seeded Lady Irish finished at 11-7. Second-seeded Hershey improved to 18-2.
Cumberland Valley 12, South Western 11: At Hanover, the Mustangs' season ended with a District 3 Class 3-A quarterfinal loss.
The fourth-seeded Mustangs finished at 12-5. Fifth-seeded Cumberland Valley improved to 14-6.
Manheim Twp. 16, Red Lion 2: At Manheim, Red Lion's season came to an end with a District 3 Class 3-A quarterfinal defeat.
Ben Hornberger (goal, assist) and Elijah Workinger (goal) accounted for the Lions' offense. Nick Serrano made 26 saves in a losing effort.
Tenth-seeded Red Lion finished 11-8. No. 2 seed Manheim Twp. improved to 16-1.
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at firstname.lastname@example.org.