Almost two weeks ago, Notre Dame Prep (Towson, Md.) girls lacrosse nearly sent shock waves across the Beltway and beyond with an upset bid of McDonogh (Owings Mills, Md.) that would have snapped a nation-best win streak that was closing in on the 200 mark. The Blazers held a lead with four minutes to go, only to falter in overtime.
Given a second shot on an even grander stage — the IAAM A Conference title game at US Lacrosse’s Tierney Field in Sparks, Md. — Prep didn’t squander. The Blazers took down McDonogh, 10-8, to snap the nation’s longest win streak at 198, a mark that began on April 13, 2009.
“That was the craziest feeling. It was almost like surreal,” Blazers senior attack Hannah Mardiney, a Preseason ALL-USA selection, told the Baltimore Sun. “It was almost like a dream. I was out there and when it got to 20 seconds, I think that’s when it started getting really real. … [After] last year, it was really great to get back out here and get the championship back.”
Notre Dame had been knocking on the door. When the Blazers took McDonogh to overtime in that previous meeting, it was just the second time during the streak that the Eagles had needed the extra frame to win. In this installment, however, the Eagles never led, and only tied the score once at 2-2.
“We had a quiet confidence. We played loose and like we had nothing to lose,” Notre Dame coach Mac Ford told US Lacrosse. “Our defense played lights out.”
After the game had gone final, Notre Dame unveiled T-shirts that said, “The streak starts today.”
For her part McDonogh head coach Nancy Love, an assistant throughout the streak until taking the lead this season, said the mark is something worth celebrating too.
“I say let’s have a huge party and celebrate what this was,” Love told the Sun. “Hats off to [former coach] Chris Robinson. Bring everybody back who’s been a part of this. Let’s have a huge celebration and find joy and happiness in what this has been instead of fearing it and being worried and anxious.”