WOOSTER — The resiliency that the Dublin Coffman High School boys lacrosse team often showed throughout one of its greatest seasons was on full display in the final period May 30.
The Shamrocks rallied from a five-goal deficit in a Division I state semifinal against Cleveland St. Ignatius at Wooster to force overtime.
The Wildcats, however, will get another crack at the state championship after Merick Hartley scored with 3 minutes, 6 seconds left in overtime to give St. Ignatius a 16-15 victory.
Coffman finished 21-2, while St. Ignatius improved to 16-7 and will play Cincinnati St. Xavier in the state final at 7 p.m. June 2 at Ohio Wesleyan. The Wildcats lost in the state final each of the past two seasons.
“These guys have got a lot of heart,” Shamrocks coach Shane Comisford said of his players. “It’s not the first time we’ve been in this situation, but it was too little, too late.”
St. Ignatius built a 10-5 lead late in the first half behind the faceoff play of Anthony Ameo, an Ohio State commit.
During the final minute of the second period, Nick Harris and Ethan Tyack scored as the Shamrocks closed to within 10-7 by halftime.
Coffman cut its deficit to 10-9 on a goal by Tyack with six minutes left in the third period, but St. Ignatius made it 11-9 with 5:15 left in the quarter on a goal by Hartley and then got a goal seven seconds later from Ameo after he won the faceoff.
The Wildcats led 14-9 heading into the final period and 15-11 with 5:05 remaining.
Coffman scored four goals to tie the game at 15, with the tying goal coming from Evan James with 1:48 remaining.
The Shamrocks nearly took the lead with less than a minute left in regulation, but Jack Kreber’s goal was disallowed because of a foul.
“We knew (St. Ignatius) had really good shooters and faceoffs killed us,” Comisford said. “(Ameo) is a helluva faceoff guy. That’s what it kind of came down to, faceoff and goalie play.”
Cincinnati St. Xavier 18, Worthington Kilbourne 8
DAYTON — Kilbourne wasn’t able to climb out of an early hole against St. Xavier.
The Blue Bombers scored on their first two possessions and led 7-2 after the first quarter en route to a decisive win over the Wolves in a Division I state semifinal May 30 at Chaminade Julienne.
Kilbourne finished 17-6, while St. Xavier improved to 18-3 and will play St. Ignatius in the state final.
The Wolves got a goal from Jake LeVette to pull within 2-1, but failed to take advantage of a man-up advantage seconds later, turning the ball over. St. Xavier then got a pair of goals from both Nick Shamsi and John Holcomb that more than offset a goal from Kilbourne’s Carson Kott to take a big lead into the second quarter.
“That was a big play at the time, but I’m not sure that play was a turning point,” Kilbourne coach Mike Lippert said. “They beat us in transition all night and they beat us in getting ground balls. They have two guys who are exceptional faceoff guys who both will play Division I college lacrosse. We also weren’t able to execute our clear the way we typically do.
“Kudos to (St. Xavier). They are a great team. They’ve got a lot of dudes who are big, fast and athletic.”
The Wolves never got closer than three goals after the opening quarter, trailing 10-6 at halftime and 14-6 after three quarters.
The game was delayed for 2 hours, 4 minutes because of lightning with 9:29 remaining and Kilbourne trailing 15-7.
Nick Clay, Ryan Wesolowski and Jake LeVette all scored two goals for the Wolves, while Holcomb and Johnny Marrocco both scored four goals for the Blue Bombers.