DAYTON — Few teams have gotten the best of the Upper Arlington High School boys lacrosse team in recent years, but Cincinnati Moeller can add itself to the list.
The Crusaders edged the Golden Bears 10-9 in a Division I state semifinal May 31 at Chaminade Julienne, marking their second victory over UA in less a month. Moeller also defeated the defending state champion Bears 8-7 on May 6.
“We played too flat for too long, and this is too good a team to do that against,” Bears coach Kyle Olson said. “We battled back, but we ran out of time. (Moeller) played a great game top to bottom. Our offense became more one-on-one driven instead of playing the team concept. We just didn’t click enough.”
UA, which was seeking its seventh state championship in nine years and its 17th overall, finished 20-3.
The only other team in the past five years to defeat the Bears twice in a season was Cincinnati St. Xavier, which did so in 2015, including in the state final.
Jack Dolan scored all three of his goals in the fourth quarter to help UA answer Moeller’s five-goal run to end the first half. Dolan’s last goal came with 1 minute, 8 seconds left, and after a tripping penalty on the Bears with 22 seconds left, UA mustered one final look.
E.J. Caldwell’s shot in transition smacked the crossbar and caromed high in the air with about three seconds left, ending the Bears’ final chance.
Matt Marsh and Ben Tjaden each added two goals for UA.
Logan Dieball and Brendan Sigurdson both scored two goals to lead Moeller, which improved to 16-7 and advanced to play Cleveland St. Ignatius in the state final June 3 at Ohio Wesleyan University.
“These kids just finally figured out through a lot of adversity, through a lot of challenges, that they were going to get the job done,” said Crusaders coach Sean McGinnis, whose team reached the state final for the first time since 1993. “They believe in each other and they believe in what we’re trying to do.”
Cleveland St. Ignatius 5, Olentangy Liberty 3
WOOSTER — In a game that Liberty coach Jason Godwin believes showcased two of the state’s best goalkeepers, his team wasn’t able to cash in enough times during a Division I state semifinal May 31 at Wooster.
St. Ignatius, which was last year’s state runner-up, improved to 14-7 and advanced to play Cincinnati Moeller in the state final June 3 at Ohio Wesleyan.
Wildcats goalie Carter Blossey made nine saves and Skylar Wahlund had 10 saves for Liberty, which finished 16-6.
“We couldn’t finish,” Godwin said. “We had a lot of opportunities left on the door step. How many goals did we miss standing on the crease? I don’t know. We did everything we could defensively.”
St. Ignatius took a 1-0 lead with 1:35 left in the first half on a goal by Nathan Conry and made it 2-0 with 16 seconds left before halftime on a goal by Grayson Gerard.
Then with 2:45 to go in the third period, Michael Boehm scored to give the Wildcats a 3-0 lead.
Liberty answered 30 seconds later on a goal by Griffin Hughes but fell behind 4-1 with 10:10 remaining on Ian Flynn’s goal.
The Patriots’ Johnny Wiseman scored to make it 4-2 with 7:09 left and Hughes scored with 5:56 remaining to cut the deficit to 4-3, but an empty-net goal by Conry with 12 seconds left sealed the win for St. Ignatius.
—Jarrod UlreyDivision II
Cincinnati Mariemont 6, Watterson 5
Watterson ended up two wins short of its first state championship after falling to Mariemont in a Division II state semifinal May 31 at Dayton Chaminade Julienne.
The loss snapped an 18-game winning streak for the Eagles, who finished 18-2.
The Warriors improved to 18-3 and advanced to play Toledo St. Francis in the state final June 3 at Ohio Wesleyan.
Riley Taylor led the Eagles with three goals.
Will Brown scored to give Watterson a 1-0 lead, but Mariemont scored the next three goals. After Riley Taylor scored to cut the deficit to 3-2, Braden Bortz gave Mariemont a 4-2 lead just before halftime.
Watterson’s A.J. Rigsby made it 4-3 with a goal, but Cole Harden scored his third goal of the game to give the Warriors a 5-3 advantage.
Brad Quick scored to give Mariemont a 6-4 lead with 10:04 remaining.