Mammoth, Harrow champions of Elite | VailDaily.com

Mammoth, Harrow champions of Elite

Andrew Harley
LAX Finals1 7-4 CS Vail Daily/Coreen Sapp Axia's Crista Samaras, right, tries to drive the ball around Elizabeth Pillion during Harrow's 9-6 victory in the Vail Lacrosse Shootout Finals Sunday afternoon at Ford Field.
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What a contrast between men’s and women’s lacrosse. There’s something more civilized and regal about women’s lacrosse. Both sports are filled with aggression, desire and sometimes vengeance, but the men must wear helmets and pads, and they are allowed to bodycheck and club each other with their sticks. It seems like the roots of women’s lacrosse lie in field hockey, polo and soccer, while the male version feels more like a mix of rugby, ice hockey, fencing and war.In the 2004 Vail Women’s Elite Lacrosse Shootout, Team Harrow came away with the victory over defending champions, AXIA, 10-6. And, Mammoth defeated GMH to take the Men’s Elite title with a 9-6 win.”We put this team together like two months ago. We got a couple extra guys in Chase Martin and Jason (Leneau), who was facing off for us, and it was huge,” said Mammoth goalkeeper Erik Miller, who won the MVP award for the Men’s Elite tournament. “It was pretty neat to see our Canadian guys come out here and play. They do different things, and I think it screws up some people. And, our team’s really rough. I mean, we’re aggressive. A lot of people didn’t like it, but that’s just the way we’re used to playing.”After a scoreless opening 5:30, Mammoth’s Ian Shure christened GMH’s net off an assist from Jared McNichol. Twenty seconds later, GMH’s Jesse Tarr accidentally lobbed a pass into his own goal.

GMH’s Mike Young hit a goal with a baseball swing at a pass from Pat Holloway. Geoff Beiging gave Mammoth a 3-1 lead with an off-balance shot. Mammoth’s Gavin Prout upped the lead to 4-1 to end the first quarter.GMH’s Mike Holloway took advantage of a penalty situation early in the second quarter to cut Mammoth’s lead to two. Both teams went scoreless for the next seven minutes, and Beiging broke the scoreboard silence. Beiging picked up his hat trick 20 seconds later, giving Mammoth a 6-2 lead.Mammoth took a 6-3 advantage into halftime.”They’re a great team. They hung with us tough. I was worried about it,” said Miller. “We knew it was going to be a good game. A lot of people were saying it wasn’t fair that we were here because we’re pro players and stuff like that. But, I mean, it was a pretty level field, I thought. Everybody played great.”GMH’s Kyle Barrie (two scores) and Xander Ritz put the first three goals of the third quarter past Miller to tie the game at six.Tough defense, stellar work by Miller in goal and bullying offense led by Martin took Mammoth to its 9-6 victory.”It was fun to come out here and play good players. They were a little bit younger, faster,” said Martin. “It was great to play against them.”

Team Harrow entered Sunday’s women’s contest minor underdogs, and it started things off with the first two goals by Patience Baldwin and Michelle Zurfluh.In between the goals, AXIA spent three minutes in Harrow’s crease to no avail. AXIA and Harrow each scored in the ensuing three minutes to keep Harrow two goals ahead, 3-1.AXIA’s Danie Shearer, Randall Goldsborough and Crista Samaras combined for a 3-0 run to give AXIA the lead, 4-3. AXIA took that lead into halftime.Harrow’s Elizabeth Pillion tied the game up 1:27 into the second half. Zurfluh sent home her second goal of the day off an assist from Mindy Leher. Harrow’s Jami Wilus struck next with 21 minutes remaining.Harrow’s second half goalkeeper, Megan Dentler, made some spectacular saves in penalty situations over the course of the half.Then, Harrow’s Jen Adams, who emerged with the MVP award for the tournament, scored Harrow’s seventh.”I had a pretty average game today, but I think our team in general was awesome. We did a lot,” said Adams, who is from Adelaide, Australia. “When you play with such a great group of gals, they make you look good every single game. So, it’s definitely a tribute back to them. I don’t there was any one individual MVP out there. There was a whole team of us.”

AXIA’s final two goals came from Kinsley O’Garrow, who took one coast-to-coast, and another from 25 yards out.Leher and Kelly Coppedge put Harrow’s go-ahead goals in, sealing Harrow’s 10-6 victory.”I thought it was a great team effort. We worked well together, and it was fun,” said Wilus, who hails from outside of Philadelphia. “We were fortunate to have a lot of subs that we could bring off the bench, and everybody worked really well together on our team. So, it’s great that we came out with the victory. It’s been a great weekend.”Wilus pointed out a couple of the keys to Harrow’s win: “I thought we controlled the ball in the midfield and our defense did an excellent job of stopping their short passes along the crease. Defense came up big.”In other Men’s Elite scores, Rebel Jammin’ Salmon beat Velocity SP, 10-7, to take third place. The Bullets beat the Rocky Mountain Oysters, 14-10.Andrew Harley can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 610, or at aharley@vaildaily.com.