Gang Green, Outlaws advance to women’s final
VAIL ” Hip flexors are highly-overrated when it comes to lacrosse.
Gang Green’s Molly Parker wasn’t meant to play in Saturday’s women’s elite semifinal of the Vail Lacrosse Shootout because she had pulled both of hers.
“I’m not really supposed to be running. I just went in for a couple of minutes,” Parker said. “We were just supposed to be running a play. I was open because they were loaded to one side. I just decided to take it.”
Her shot was true and Gang Green squeaked by the two-time defending champion ReLAXers, 5-4, in overtime. Gang Green takes on the Outlaws, 14-9 winners over Greene Turtle in Saturday’s other semi, in today’s title game at 12:30 p.m. at Ford Park.
“She came in at the last minute when we needed her, and she put it away,” said Margo Duke, who’s organized Gang Green, a team of Dartmouth players and alumnae. “We were pumped up for her.”
As if that weren’t a heart-stopping enough of a finish, the ReLAXers’ Morgan Lang clanked one off the left post just before Parker scored.
“Fate has its way,” Lang said. “I wish them the best of luck in the finals.”
The ReLAXers never trailed until the final shot in overtime. Powered by two goals by Caroline McGuire, they led 4-3 with 12:43 left in the second half. Dartmouth’s transition game made the difference late when Kate Labrum made a great run down the left side, setting up Kristen Barry for her second goal of the game.
“We have some fast midfielders and they do a good job moving up the field,” Barry said. “We just try to help them get open on the attack.”
That helped Gang Green recover from a bit of a slow start.
“We were really tired,” Duke said. “We had an 8 a.m. (quarterfinal) game. We didn’t have the energy we needed at the beginning of the game. We kind of realized that we had to get our act together. We just pulled together.”
Backstopping the effort for Dartmouth was goalie Chelsea Kirk.
“She’s been playing great this whole tournament,” Duke said. “She’s been clutch.”
Outlaws outlast Greene Turtle
Call it a little ACC out west.
The Outlaws, based out of the University of Maryland, advanced to today’s finals with a 14-9 win over Greene Turtle, a Duke-based team.
For the record, the Terps beat Duke, 19-18, during the regular season, but the Blue Demons made the Final Four.
“We’re excited,” said Acacia Walker, a Maryland alumna and now an assistant coach at three-time national champion Northwestern. “That was a very good team we beat. Those girls are all our friends from home. There’s always an underlying rivalry, but we’re good friends.”
The Outlaws looked like they were going to run away with it early, taking a 4-1 lead, but Greene Turtle rallied to tie it at five at the half.
“They didn’t give up,” Greene Turtle coach Dee Cryer said. “They were out here to have fun. The way to do that is to get everybody involved. I give them credit for it.
“The Outlaws are phenomenal and mature team, who truly should be in the championship game. I just would have loved to have seen this game as the championship game.”
Caroline Cryer led Greene Turtle with a hat trick.
But the Outlaws’ depth was too much in the end. Walker, Kelly Coppedge and Katie Doolittle all had hat tricks.
“We were just saying that it was so incredible to play with such good talent,” Walker said. “Every time, we get the ball, we know where everybody is. There are just five or six options always. We just read each other so well.”
While both teams are ACC rivals, they had similar plans to prepare for their games today ” Greene Turtle is in the third-place game against the ReLAXers at 10:10 a.m. at the Vail Athletic Field.
“Plenty of salt, and ready to go.” Cryer said.
The ACC has found Margarita-ville in the Rockies.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or firstname.lastname@example.org.