Walton lacrosse girls switch up style, return to Class AAAAAA title game

Photo by Craig Sager II

No. 3 seed Walton girls advanced to the Class AAAAAA state lacrosse championship for the second straight year with an 8-5 win over host Lassiter Tuesday night. The Raiders were facing Lassiter in the semifinals for the third straight year and with just two seniors on this year’s roster were placed in a rematch of a Trojan team that handed them a 16-10 defeat at home on April 22.

Walton never trailed and after piling on a 3-0 advantage with a pair of goals from Erin McBride and one from Hunter Corvin 7:26 into the first half, had the lead they needed to control the game and keep the ball out of Lassiter’s possession.

“We basically just ran a completely different game strategy than the last time we played them,” explained Walton head coach Mandy Ryan. “More of a control game and we are a run and gun team so that was something completely different.”

Lassiter was coming off a 16-4 quarterfinal victory over North Gwinnett and its lowest goal total this season against instate opponents before the semis was nine against No. 1 Milton. The Trojans managed just two first half goals in Tuesday’s defeat and were down 8-3 until two late goals in the last seven minutes of the game.

“We wanted to control the pace from the get go and we know that Lassiter runs a zone so if we didn’t go at them, then they had no chance to squash us with their zone,” said Ryan. “So we just waited for them to make a mistake.”

Walton extended its 4-2 halftime lead with a Carly White goal less than three minutes into the second half and after keeping the possession for much of the next 10 minutes of action, Erin McBride completed her hat trick with 9:28 left to grow the lead to 7-3. Sumner Santivanez scored with 7:11 left in the game to put Walton up 8-3.

Protecting the Walton goal was sophomore Ashley Asbury, which also held Harrison to five goals in last Friday’s 17-5 quarterfinal victory.

Nine-time state champion Milton awaits the third-seeded Raiders in the finals. The Eagles dominated in the semifinals Tuesday night and ran away with a 23-10 victory over Chattahoochee.



Westminster 13, Cambridge 1: Westminster opened up an 8-0 halftime lead over the host Bears and received a seven-goal scoring performance from Blake Davis as they cruised into the Class A-AAAAA state title game. Westminster’s Chase Williams contributed a hat trick, with all three goals coming in the first half. The Wildcats’ defense is on a record pace, and after outscoring Blessed Trinity and Benedictine a combined 31-1 in the first two rounds, Westminster holds a 44-2 scoring edge entering Saturday’s finals matchup with Lovett (14-10 winners over Allatoona on Tuesday).

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