New Trier makes it 7 straight state titles
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It can't get much better for Pat Callahan, Charlie Carothers, Robbie Marren and Chad Sawyer.
The four seniors won their fourth Illinois High School Lacrosse Association state championship on Saturday as New Trier beat Loyola Academy 9-2 at Oak Park-River Forest High School.
It was the seventh consecutive state title for New Trier, and its sixth straight over Loyola with a championship at stake.
"We got smarter as the season went on," New Trier coach Tom Herrala said. "We peaked at the right time. This was the best game we played all season."
Neither team did much of anything in the opening quarter as the teams battled it out without a single score.
New Trier, which lost a 6-5 contest to Loyola Academy on May 12, got on the board first with 10:41 left in the second quarter on Callahan's first of two goals.
Loyola's Luke Cowan answered with the equalizer 57 seconds later but the Ramblers did not score again until Cowan found the back of net with only 3:19 remaining in the contest.
A stingy, physical, man-to-man defense pestered the Ramblers all afternoon.
"We focused on a couple plays from the last time we played and we focused on sliding early," senior defender Taylor McGinnis said. "We swarmed the ball really fast and had two or three guys on the ball, blindsided them and then dominated the ground ball battle."
On the few opportunities when the Ramblers had a chance to score, New Trier junior goalie Jack Connelly responded. He finished with 12 saves.
"The defense played outstanding," Herrala said. "They played aggressive and when they did get a shot, Jack Connelly was awesome in goal."
The Trevians led 4-1 at halftime and then pretty much put the Ramblers away in the third quarter on goals by Ben Miller, Sawyer and Rory McGinnis to extend their lead to 7-1.
"Possessing the ball was a big point and taking it to the cage," New Trier senior Mick Parks said. "I think we did a good job of that and the defense did a great job too."
New Trier will graduate 15 seniors but will return 22 players next year in pursuit of its eighth straight IHSLA title.
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