Perfect end: Bengals win first sanctioned title

Thurston, Sharpe lead Bengals to second state title in a row

Special to The StateApril 17, 2010 

Blythewood secured its second-straight state girls lacrosse championship on Saturday at White Knoll, downing Riverside 14-12 in the first High School League sanctioned title game.

Junior attack Kelsey Thurston scored eight goals to lead the Bengals to their 33rd consecutive victory, but the player of the game was junior goalie Maddy Sears, who stood tall between the pipes.

“Maddy brought her ‘A’ game today,” said Bengals coach Rick Piersma.

“She was a little shaky in regulation against Wando (in the semifinals on Friday), but she came up big in overtime and that carried over to today. But this was a team win. We play the game right and straight up. Winning thirty three games in a row and two straight state championships says it all.”

Blythewood, which finished 18-0 this season, had a 9-5 lead at halftime and opened the second half with a goal to create a five-goal margin. Riverside kept pressing the attack, but Sears kept the Warriors at bay with several outstanding saves.

“I think we all felt a little pressure this season,” said Sears.

“Last year, we had no idea that we were going to win it, and this year we had expectations and something to prove. It was really never wracking against Wando, especially in overtime, but I know I was more relaxed today and I guess it showed.”

Senior captains Trisha Harper, April Piersma and Kathryn Dozier backed Thurston in the scoring department with two goals apiece.

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