La Costa Canyon Mavericks Girls Varsity Ranked #24 Nationally By Lacrosse Magazine

24. La Costa Canyon (Calif.)

The Mavericks (23-0) finished as CIF-San Diego Section champions for the second straight season and third time in four years. LCC has now won 36 straight games and sports a 63-3 record over the last three seasons. Senior attacker Tara Arolla (UC Berkeley) capped her four-year career with 296 goals and 97 assists.

Note: These rankings appear in the current issue of Lacrosse Magazine, a US Lacrosse publication available exclusively to its members. Join today to start your monthly subscription.


by Paul Ohanian, Lacrosse Magazine Online Staff

1. St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes (Va.)

Talk about consistent excellence in girls’ lacrosse, and you need look no further than SSSA. Coach Kathy Jenkins’ program has never finished worse than ninth in Lacrosse Magazine’s ranking, and it has been either second or third in each of the past five seasons.

Until now.

After capturing their 14th consecutive Independent School League championship this spring and adding their third straight Virginia state title for good measure (they’ve only participated in the tournament since 2006), we’ve finally given the Saints (26-0) the top nod.

It would be a gross understatement to say that the Saints dominated opponents in 2008. A one-goal win against McDonogh and a two-goal win over Notre Dame Prep were the only games that held any real fourth quarter drama. In fact, 21 of the team’s 26 games were decided by 10 goals or better.

“Winning the McDonogh tournament early in the season gave this team a lot of confidence,” said Jenkins, who completed her 32nd season with the Saints. “It was a very unselfish team that played relaxed all season long.”

Not even a bus breakdown on their biggest road trip of the year — a visit to New Jersey’s Moorestown — could rattle these Saints. Arriving at the game site in rented vehicles, SSSA promptly posted a workmanlike 12-7 win over one of the premier teams in the country.

“We were a very fast team that did a good job of working the ball quickly,” said Jenkins. “Every team is different, and this group really enjoyed playing the game. They worked hard, had fun and enjoyed being with each other.”

Junior Kelly Austin (84 goals) and Dartmouth-bound senior Haldey Lankford (80 assists) were a lethal combination all season long. Seniors Cassie Pyle (Princeton), Annie Taylor (Virginia) and Kate Collins (Boston College) were among the midfield and defensive leaders. At least nine seniors are expected to join Division I college programs next year.


2. John Carroll (Md.)

It’s hard not to make a case for the Patriots (18-0) as a deserving No. 1. Despite a couple of close calls in the postseason, John Carroll completed its undefeated run through one of the nation’s most difficult schedules by winning a second straight Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland (IAAM) championship. JC concluded the season with its second win over McDonogh, a convincing 11-6 victory in the IAAM title game. A trio of standouts — Casey Ancarrow (James Madison), Grace Gaeng (Maryland) and The Baltimore Sun’s Player of the Year Allyson Carey (Vanderbilt) — spearheaded a potent offense that averaged 14.5 goals per game.


3. West Genesee (N.Y.)

It’s déjà vu again in Camillus, N.Y. The West Genesee juggernaut completed its second consecutive 24-0 campaign, and it won its second straight New York Class A championship and fifth in the last eight years. Seniors Lauren Welch (Canisius) and Ariel Kramer (Marist) led the offensive explosion with a combined 143 goals, while Kiersten Tupper (Le Moyne) established a new team record with 93 assists. In addition to all the lopsided wins, WG also proved it could win the close ones, surviving one-goal games against Archbishop Carroll (Pa.) early in the season, local rival Fayetteville-Manlius in midseason, and Farmingdale in the state final.


4. Severna Park (Md.)

The Falcons (20-0) breezed virtually unchallenged to their second consecutive and seventh overall state championship. Midfielder Julie Gardner (Virginia), The Washington Post’s Player of the Year, led the onslaught once again with 53 goals, including six in Severna Park’s lopsided win in the state final. Hayley Rausch (New Hampshire) added 42 goals and scored the overtime winner in the team’s only nailbiter of the season against Broadneck. A dominating defense held 13 opponents to five goals or less as the Falcons extended their winning streak to 40 games.


5. Moorestown (N.J.)

The numbers associated with the Quakers’ program are simply overwhelming. Moorestown (24-1) captured its ninth straight state championship and 16th overall in 2008 and extended its winning streak against New Jersey opponents to 189 straight games. Coach Deanna Knobloch’s program has amassed a 206-8 record in this decade. This season’s only stumble came against top-ranked SSSA, after which the Quakers rebounded with 17 consecutive wins. Eight seniors are heading to Division I programs.


6. Garden City (N.Y.)

Coach Diane Chapman’s program has established itself as the best on Long Island with a record of 61-2 over the last three years. The Trojans (21-1) claimed their fourth straight LI championship and third straight New York Class B title this season, defeating Brighton, 12-10 in overtime, in the final. Senior Erin Brennan (Pennsylvania) concluded her record-setting career with 84 goals and 57 assists in 2008.


7. Radnor (Pa.)

The Red Raiders (23-0) proved their championship mettle in the Pennsylvania Class AAA final by overcoming their largest deficit of the season — an early 5-0 hole — to post a 15-11 victory. Prior to the final, Radnor had trailed in the second half of just one game all season. Longtime coach Phyllis Kilgour considered this her best team ever, led by a balanced offense featuring seven players with at least 40 goals. The Raiders registered their first undefeated season in 22 years.


8. Shoreham-Wading River (N.Y.)

The Wildcats (20-1) finished one overtime loss away from a perfect season. Even with the midseason loss to Garden City, SWR proved to be one of the nation’s best as it captured its third straight Long Island title and second straight New York Class C championship. The Wildcats made short work of Skaneateles in the state final, scoring the game’s first nine goals en route to a 21-5 victory.


9. Westwood (Mass.)

The Wolverines (24-0-1) won the state’s Division 1 championship for the third time in six years by defeating two-time defending champ Framingham in the semifinal and Longmeadow in the final. Three 100-point scorers — seniors Alex Frank (Northwestern) and Erin Massimi (Dartmouth) and sophomore Kelly Rich — fueled an offense that tallied at least 15 goals in all but three games and eclipsed the 20-goal mark six times.


10. Shawnee (N.J.)

A strong run at an undefeated season ended where it usually does, in the postseason against Moorestown. But despite losing 17-3 to the Quakers in the Group 3 state semifinals, Shawnee (20-1) enjoyed a strong season that had it ranked ahead of its arch-rival in the state’s LaxPower ratings late into the year. Princeton-bound midfielder Barb Previ had 67 goals and 44 assists to pace the offense.


11. Brighton (N.Y.)

The Barons (19-2) had a two-goal lead with seven minutes remaining in the state final against Garden City, but they eventually lost in overtime to finish as the Class B runner-up for the third time in four years. Brighton’s only other loss came against state champion West Genesee in midseason. Midfielder Rachel Ballatori (Northwestern) capped her standout career with 182 goals, including 65 goals this season.


12. McDonogh (Md.)

All three of the Eagles’ losses came against the top two teams in this year’s ranking. McDonogh (18-3) finished as the championship runner-up in the IAAM, losing 11-6 to John Carroll in the final. The Eagles also lost to JC by five goals in the regular season. The third loss was by one goal against SSSA in early April. In between, McDonogh defeated Uniondale (Pa.), Farmingdale (N.Y.) and Good Counsel (Md.), among others.


13. Farmingdale (N.Y.)

Coach Tracy Wiener’s team finished as New York’s Class A runner-up, falling to West Genesee by one goal in the state final. Following a two-goal loss at McDonogh in midseason, Farmingdale (17-3) won 11 of 12 against a difficult schedule to earn a spot in the state final. Midfielders Alyssa Kildare and Candace Rossi, both going to Johns Hopkins, were catalysts for the Dalers.


14. Springfield (Del. Co.) (Pa.)

All three of the Cougars’ losses were by one goal. The first came against Shawnee in the second game of the year. After a nine-game winning streak, they lost in overtime to Unionville. Four days later, they dropped another one-goal decision against Radnor. The Cougars (19-3) then won eight straight to capture the state’s AA championship for the third straight season and fifth time in six years.


15. Chatham (N.J.)

The Cougars (23-3) finished as New Jersey’s Tournament of Champions runner-up to Moorestown. Led by the high-scoring duo of Danielle Van Fossan (Georgetown) and Lauren Murray (Lehigh), Chatham won 18 straight following back-to-back early-season losses to Mendham and Shawnee and captured the state’s Group I title. Chatham also avenged one of those losses by twice defeating Mendham down the stretch.


16. Georgetown Visitation (Md.)

Other than two losses against league-rival SSSA, GV (18-3) was virtually spotless in 2008. The Tigers won 16 of their first 17 games before losing their first encounter against the mighty Saints. GV then worked its way through the ISL playoffs to earn a championship re-match against SSSA, but fell short again. Senior Mary Lacey Gilbride (North Carolina) helped lead the Tigers to their most successful season ever with 60 goals and 22 assists.


17. West Chester Rustin (Pa.)

The Golden Knights (17-3) sure didn’t look like the second-year varsity program. Upsets over Strath Haven and Great Valley early in the season helped provide enough momentum to carry West Chester all the way to the PIAA Class AAA final, where it nearly upset Radnor as well. The only other losses came to West Genesee and in a second meeting with Great Valley.


18. Broadneck (Md.)

If not for Severna Park, Broadneck (13-4) might have been the class of the public schools in Maryland. Unfortunately, the Bruins faced the state champion three times this spring and lost all three, including an 11-10 overtime heartbreaker in the regional final. Midfielder Karri Ellen Johnson (Maryland) was a presence at both ends of the field, finishing with 57 goals and 65 draw controls.


19. Framingham (Mass.)

An early-season loss to Wellesley snapped Framingham’s 52-game winning streak, but the Flyers (22-2-1) rolled unbeaten through the rest of the schedule, including a midseason tie with state champion Westwood. The new streak didn’t end until a two-goal loss to Westwood in the state semifinal. Framingham limited 11 of 24 opponents to five goals or less.


20. Northport (N.Y.)

The Tigers (18-3) won 14 of their first 15 games, including impressive victories against West Islip and Rocky Point, and they finished as Suffolk County’s Class A champs. Senior midfielder Lacey Vigmostad finished with 95 points to lead Northport’s high-powered offense, which also included 50-goal scorer Nina Sarcona (Massachusetts).


21. Shore Regional (N.J.)

The Blue Devils (20-2) suffered just one loss in the regular season, a one-goal overtime loss to powerhouse Moorestown. Shore Regional advanced to the state’s Group I final before suffering its only other loss, a three-goal setback against Chatham. Senior midfielder Kelly Draper (Lehigh) amassed 83 goals and 53 assists to lead the way.


22. Vero Beach (Fla.)

This year’s state title may have been the first “official” one for the Indians (20-2), but coupled with the unsanctioned championships of the previous two seasons, coach Shannon Dean’s squad has moved to the head of the class in the South. In addition to winning all of its in-state games, Vero won seven of nine out-of-staters, losing only to Good Counsel (Md.) and No. 1 SSSA.


23. New Trier (Ill.)

The Trevians (24-3) started slowly, losing two of their first three against East Coast visitors, including a lopsided loss against SSSA. They rebounded well to stake a claim as the top team in the Midwest this spring. Led by do-everything midfielder Lizzie Abramson (Northwestern), New Trier closed the year with 21 straight wins and the state championship. The run included a victory over Ohio’s Upper Arlington as well as two victories against state runner-up Loyola Academy.


24. La Costa Canyon (Calif.)

The Mavericks (23-0) finished as CIF-San Diego Section champions for the second straight season and third time in four years. LCC has now won 36 straight games and sports a 63-3 record over the last three seasons. Senior attacker Tara Arolla (UC Berkeley) capped her four-year career with 296 goals and 97 assists.


25. Great Valley (Pa.)

Three of the Patriots (19-4) four losses came against the state’s three other Top 25 teams — West Chester Rustin, Radnor and Springfield. Coach Joe Tornetta’s team was led by a trio of Divison I-bound players — Emily Ellisen (George Mason), Kim Wenger (Duke) and Keelin Hood (Temple) — that combined for over 200 goals and almost 100 assists in 2008.

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