by Jeffrey Wojtala – Special to the News-Press
George Mason High School’s girls varsity lacrosse team traveled to Sterling on Monday, April 18 to face the 4A Dominion High School Titans. The 2A Mustangs were aware they would need to work hard for a win in this match.
Playing against the 4A school, the Mustangs knew they would need to play fast and smart and took the ball down the field first and a missed pass occurred at the goal line and Mason came up empty on their first chance at goal. The Titans were strong at the draw and the Mustangs soon found themselves down 2-0 at the 21:46 mark of the first half.
The Mustangs pressed into the offensive zone numerous times but were rejected each time. At the 20:50 mark sophomore Amy Roche was fouled and on the ensuing free position scored the Mustangs first goal of the game. Alas, the Titans strong draw control continued and the Lady Mustangs again found themselves in a hole 5-1.
The Mason defense stood strong against the Titans and with 13 minutes left in the half Roche was once again awarded a free position and scored her second goal on a screaming sidearm shot that eluded the Titan goalie.
Junior Maeve Donnelly scored the next Mason goal driving to the net with an assist from junior Sarah Lubnow and Lubnow followed three minutes later with her own goal. Regrettably, as the horn sounded at the end of the first half the Titans were holding a 9-4 lead against the Mason girls.
During the intermission head coach Courtney Gibbons drew her team to the 20-yard line and laid out her game plan for the second half, and at the draw to start the second half the Lady Mustangs looked confident that they could still make this a competitive game.
The Titans once again began with strong draw and ball control, passing their way down the field and scored 53 seconds into the half.
Mason was not to be outdone as Lubnow scored her second of the game one minute later. Now the see-saw battle for control and defense was to begin.
One minute after posting her second goal, Lubnow scored her third, but the Titans responded with two of their own a minute later making the score 12-6.
The Mustangs were now feeling confident and began winning the draw. At the 17 minute mark sophomore Lizzie Dodge performed her customary crease roll and found the back of the net and Roche scored her second three minutes later to tighten the score to 12-8.
The Titans scored at the 11 minute mark of the half but Dodge scored her second goal of the night on her first free position and sophomore Claire Hiscott placed another behind the Dominion goalie to make it a 13-10 game with 5:24 left in the game.
Although the Mustangs were feeling confident, rushed, errant and regrettable passes kept defeating their drives to the net to tie the game.
Time was slowly running out for the Mustangs and with the Titans scoring a goal at the 3:35 mark and Mason down a player because of a yellow card foul, the Titans placed one more behind sophomore goaltender Annette Schlitt who was playing outstanding to keep her teammates close.
Lubnow finished the scoring for Mason with her fourth goal of the game with 1:10 left but it wasn’t enough. The Mason girls had won the half scoring seven goals but fell in the end.
The news wasn’t all bad for Mason, as they defeated Loudon County High School in 17-5 rout at Mason on Thursday, April 14. Mason’s next game is this Thursday at home against Loudoun Valley.