A slow start didn’t derail the Dublin Coffman High School boys lacrosse team’s bid for a second consecutive Division I regional championship.
On May 24 at Dublin Scioto, the top-seeded Shamrocks scored seven goals in the second period to seize control and pulled away for a 20-11 victory over second-seeded Dublin Jerome in the Region 1 final.
Coffman improved to 20-1 and advanced to a state semifinal against Cleveland St. Ignatius on May 28 at Wooster. The Shamrocks lost to the Wildcats 16-15 in overtime in a state semifinal last season.
“We’ve just got to finish,” Coffman coach Shane Comisford said. “We’ve got unfinished business. We don’t want to stop Tuesday. We’ve got bigger goals.”
Jerome, which finished 17-6, and Coffman were tied at 3 at the end of the first quarter.
In the second period, the Shamrocks’ Cole Sundheimer and Evan James scored back-to-back goals for a 5-3 lead. Jerome cut it to 5-4 on a goal by Ray Prochko with 5 minutes, 48 seconds left in the first half, but the Shamrocks got consecutive goals from Ian Thomas and Will Hunter for a 7-4 advantage.
Ethan Tyack, Hunter and James scored later in the period as Coffman took a 10-6 lead into halftime. The Shamrocks led 15-9 heading into the final quarter.
“We just pressured (early on) and we have a very talented team,” said Jerome coach Andy Asmo, whose team also lost to Coffman during the regular season, 10-1 on March 21. “A couple breaks didn’t go our way in the third quarter and they took advantage of it.”
James finished with five goals and three assists and Nick Harris and Tyack both had four goals and two assists to lead the Shamrocks, who won the faceoff battle 21-12 and got eight saves from goalkeeper Sean McCourt.
Carter Barco, Andrew Brim, Ian Dean and Prochko all scored two goals for the Celtics.
“We just started moving the ball more (in the second quarter),” Tyack said. “We kept moving our feet and making the extra pass to kind of get the easy finish rather than settling for the outside shot.”
Upper Arlington 13, Worthington Kilbourne 7
The top-seeded Golden Bears turned the tables on the second-seeded Wolves in the Division I, Region 3 final May 24 at Westerville Central.
UA trailed 3-0 in the first quarter, but rallied to tie the score at 4 midway through the second period and broke a 5-all tie by scoring seven unanswered goals.
In last year’s regional final, Kilbourne trailed UA 3-0 but rallied to beat the Bears 8-7.
UA improved to 15-6 and advanced to play Cincinnati St. Xavier or Cincinnati Moeller in a state semifinal May 28 at Centerville.
“Jack Mason stepped up and got us our first goal with seconds left in the first period and that kind of relaxed everyone,” UA coach Kyle Olson said. “We all took a deep breath. When you’re down 3-0 to a very good team, everyone was on edge and we lost last year to those guys in this game, so we were a little tense.
“Once we broke the ice, Shea Keethler got things going at the faceoff X and we started getting smarter possessions and all of our seniors stepped up.”
A.J. Achatz scored early in the second period to pull UA within 4-3 and scored again with 1:33 left before halftime to give the Bears the lead for good at 6-5. Luke Tzagournis made it 7-5 with just six seconds left in the first half.
“After we scored back-to-back goals to end the first period and start the second period, Drew’s goal really lifted us and then we got the two to finish the half and we had all the momentum,” Mason said.
Mason, Achatz and Sam Campbell all scored three goals for the Bears and goalie Drew Hellstedt made eight saves.
Jake LeVette and Carson Kott both had two goals and goalie Drew Jackson made five saves for Kilbourne, which finished 17-5.
“We thrived off winning the faceoff and in our transition the past two or three weeks, but (UA) got the better of us in both areas tonight,” Kilbourne coach Mike Riffe said. “Give them credit, when they got rolling, it was difficult to contain them.”