Photos/Videos: Zack Beavers & Tommy Muir
PHILADELPHIA – To no surprise, the Philadelphia Catholic League’s two perennial powers have both made their way back to the championship.
Tomorrow evening, Archbishop Carroll and Cardinal O’Hara will grace the fields at Neumann-University in a season-awaited showdown for the highly coveted PCL plaque.
Yesterday afternoon, Carroll defeated No. 4 seeded Lansdale Catholic 26-2. Carroll led 17-2 at the half and added nine more goals in the second half of play. Emma Talago and Shannon Wood scored three goals each for Carroll, while Chloe Bleckley, Lydia Malone, Katie Karoly and Kiley Mottice had two goals. Bridget Robinson got the win in goal stopping two shots on the day.
Kiera Trainer and Emily Simpson scored a goal apiece for the Crusaders. Lansdale Catholic goaltender Caroline Kerr also tallied six saves.
Cardinal O’Hara also won their semifinal contest against Archbishop Wood in similar fashion, defeating a dexterous Viking team 21-1. Claire Natoli and Lexi Culp each tallied four goals, Ellie Miller and Maddie Sharkey scored three and Mia Scarduzio notched two to lead the Lady Lions to victory. Goalkeepers Mack Hand and Marina Mensch each had one save. Jayden Crossley scored Wood’s only goal in the second half while Anna Waltrich made two saves in goal for the Vikings.
Archbishop Carroll ended its season as top seed, compiling an unblemished 8-0 league record. The Lady Patriots have outscored their PCL opponents 165-17 this season, allowing fewer than two goals per game – except against O’Hara.
Carroll and O’Hara met at the very beginning of PCL play back on March 29, in which the Patriots narrowly escaped with a 13-9 victory. Since that meeting, many games have been played, skills have been sharpened and an abundance of confidence has brewed from both sides.
“We’ve got all the confidence we need, we’ve got all the skills we need. We’re ready,” said Cardinal O’Hara’s Claire Napoli.
While the Lady Patriots will be vying for their 21st consecutive league title, you best believe the two-seeded Lady Lions will do everything in their power to change the course of history.
Game time: 6:00 p.m.