DAYTON — The exact thing that allowed the DeSales High School girls lacrosse team to seemingly take control of a Division II state semifinal May 29 against Cincinnati Mariemont — sustained possession — was the one thing the Stallions couldn’t hang on to as the game went to overtime.
DeSales scored six unanswered goals in the second half to take a 13-10 lead, but Mariemont scored three of the final four goals of regulation, the last coming from Marah Campbell with 2 minutes, 58 seconds left to tie the game at 14, and Campbell scored the winner with 7.2 seconds left in overtime to give the Warriors a 15-14 win at Chaminade Julienne.
“After a while, we just got tired,” Stallions coach Joe Finotti said. “We lost some of our positioning on defense and they got through. Our (one-on-ones) weren’t as good. Our draw control had been key and we were aggressive attacking and going to the goal and we got some good shooting space. ... A few calls went against us at the end. We just couldn’t keep up with their speed.”
DeSales’ second overtime loss in a state semifinal in as many years spoiled a seven-goal outburst from attacker Sophia Finotti, a University of Cincinnati recruit. Grace Lensmire added four goals for the Stallions, who finished 18-4.
Campbell, a freshman who swung between varsity and junior varsity during the regular season, scored the tying goal with 2:58 left in regulation to cap a 3-0 run that answered a 6-0 burst by the Stallions after they trailed 10-7.
“I heard my teammate, Courtney (Robinson), yell to run and no one was in front of me, so I just went, got into the crease and picked my spot,” Campbell said. “They pulled me up on to varsity as a freshman for the (postseason) and I’ve just been trying to do my part. This is one of the best moments of my life.”
Kyra George had six goals to lead Mariemont, which improved to 16-4 and will play Chagrin Falls or Rocky River in the state final June 2 at Ohio Wesleyan.
“(DeSales’) defense was good. They were good all season with slides and cutting off Kyra and Courtney at the end and making us find another one of our players,” Warriors coach Kevin Ferry said. “(Campbell) has soft hands, she is really smooth and she’s quick and steady. For a freshman to have nerves like that in such a key moment, that says a lot about her character and her ability to contribute.”
DeSales, which defeated Mariemont 15-11 on April 13, lost to Chagrin Falls in a state semifinal last year.
“The girls fought. I am disappointed because I think we could have won that game,” coach Finotti said. “It just really stinks to lose in overtime again.”