For the past three years, midfielder Dean Zettler has watched the Thomas Worthington High School boys lacrosse team's season end in a Division I regional final.
Zettler said things will be different Saturday against Upper Arlington.

The Cardinals improved to 17-2 with a 19-12 victory over Toledo St. John's 19-12 in a semifinal Wednesday.

Eric Garris recorded five goals and one assist, and Zettler added five goals.

"History has shown that (the regional final) has been our last game," Zettler said. "That's not how it's going to be this year."

The Cardinals will visit top-seeded Upper Arlington, which escaped with a 10-9 overtime win over Dublin Coffman in a regional semifinal last Wednesday. The Golden Bears, who improved to 16-2, defeated the Cardinals 9-4 on April 17.

"In (the April 17) game, we didn't play particularly well," Thomas coach Steve Kraus said. "We had our opportunities but I don't think anyone on this team would say we gave it our best shot."

If Thomas is to be successful against UA, it needs to come out stronger than it did against St. John's. Garris scored 10 seconds into the first quarter, but the teams were tied at 2 at the end of the first quarter.

Thomas then outscored St. John's 8-2 in the second quarter to lead 10-4 at the half.

"Toledo was playing harder than we were in that first quarter, but we were able to answer that from the second quarter on," Kraus said. "We were much more focused, we were able to play with a lot more intensity and we put the ball in the ball in the cage."

"We didn't play our strongest in the first quarter," Zettler said. "Sometimes it takes a little longer to get our wheels turning. Once we got it going, we put some goals in the cage."