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Dragons' memorable season ends in 16-7 loss at state championship game | Lacrosse

Top photo: San Juan’s Alex Michael and Michael Ausilio run up field during Saturday’s Division II state lacrosse championship at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium.  Lynnwood defeated San Juan 16–7 for its first state lacrosse crown. Second photo: San Juan’s Michael Ausilio puts a hit on Lynnwood’s Trey Knowles (No. 1 white) as Knowles scores his first of four goals on Dragon goalkeeper Calen Mehrer, Saturday at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium.  Third photo: San Juan coach Rob Cuomo reacts after a call late in the Division II state lacrosse championship, Saturday at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium.  Bottom photo: San Juan’s Michael Ausilio (No. 5 black) checks Lynnwood’s Trey Knowles (No. 1 white) during the second half of Saturday’s Division II state lacrosse championship, Saturday at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium.  The Dragons fell to Lynnwood 16 – 7 in their first appearance in a state title game. - Sue Larkin / US Lacrosse
Top photo: San Juan’s Alex Michael and Michael Ausilio run up field during Saturday’s Division II state lacrosse championship at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium. Lynnwood defeated San Juan 16–7 for its first state lacrosse crown. Second photo: San Juan’s Michael Ausilio puts a hit on Lynnwood’s Trey Knowles (No. 1 white) as Knowles scores his first of four goals on Dragon goalkeeper Calen Mehrer, Saturday at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium. Third photo: San Juan coach Rob Cuomo reacts after a call late in the Division II state lacrosse championship, Saturday at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium. Bottom photo: San Juan’s Michael Ausilio (No. 5 black) checks Lynnwood’s Trey Knowles (No. 1 white) during the second half of Saturday’s Division II state lacrosse championship, Saturday at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium. The Dragons fell to Lynnwood 16 – 7 in their first appearance in a state title game.
— image credit: Sue Larkin / US Lacrosse

Photos from the game by Sound Lacrosse's Michael Jardine, Sue Larkin, Henry Valentine and David West.

Alex Tindall scored 5 goals and Trey Knowles and Nick Peters each scored 4 to lead Lynnwood to its first Division II state lacrosse championship in a 16–7 win over San Juan, Saturday before 2,650 at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium.

The championship was the first in two tries for Lynnwood.

“Our plan going into the game was shoot, shoot, shoot. It didn’t matter whether the shots hit or not,” said Tindall, whose team fired 44 shots at the San Juan cage to unsettle the Skagit Conference champions. “We’ve worked hard all season for this,” he said. “It was a great team effort.”

A key contributor for Lynnwood was junior attackman Cameron Girgus who seemed to make the right passes all night. “Assists are how I do it. They’re more important than goals," said Girgus, who delivered 7 assists along with a goal and 7 ground balls. “I like to turn heads – make the defense ball-watch. Make connections.”

On defense, the Tigers held San Juan’s Ryan Guard, who averaged just over 4 goals a game as the league’s third-leading goal scorer, to 1 goal and 3 assists. “A lot of this is team defense,” Girgus said. “We stepped up all week and worked on our defensive play.”

The state lacrosse championship appearance was the first for San Juan since the team’s founding in 2003 and capped a big year for the Dragons. The team won the Skagit Conference title, five players were named to the All-Conference Team, and the team had division leaders in assists, goals, groundballs and saves. The Dragons finished the year 14-3 overall; two losses were to Lynnwood, one to Snohomish in double OT.

“I’m proud of my boys win or lose,” San Juan coach Rob Cuomo said. “This is an important accomplishment.”

Riding on the emotion that drove San Juan all season, the Dragons jumped out to an early 3 -1 lead. But after exchanging goals, Lynnwood’s Sam Girgus put a shot past Dragons goalkeeper Calen Mehrer for the first of 6 unanswered goals through the end of the second quarter as the Tigers took an 8–4 lead into the intermission.

“Lynnwood displayed great stick skills. They work well together,” Cuomo said. “Calen (Mehrer) just couldn’t face that many point blank shots. Lynnwood played a really good lacrosse game and earned the state championship.”

At 11:53 of the third, Ausilio netted his third of the night for San Juan to narrow the gap to 3 goals, but that was as close as the Dragons would come as Lynnwood scored the next 8 of 9 goals to pull out to a 16–6 lead at the end of three.

San Juan’s Kyle Skoog netted the only goal in the fourth, his second of the night, to round out the scoring.

San Juan goalkeeper Calen Mehrer had just 3 saves in goal.

In the Division I state championship game Saturday, senior Ryan Deal scored with 1:50 remaining in overtime to give Bellevue its first state lacrosse title in 19 years in an 8–7 win over Mercer Island at Seattle’s Memorial Stadium. With the win, Bellevue handed the Islanders their first loss in 22 starts this season, their first victory over the Islanders since 2002.

DIVISION II SCORING
Lynnwood 5 3 8 0 -- 16
San Juan 4 0 2 1 -- 7

SCORING HIGHLIGHTS: Lynnwood 16, San Juan 7 (Alex Tindall, L, 5 goals, 1 assist, 7 ground balls; Trey Knowles, L, 4 goals, 1 assist, 5 ground balls; Nick Peters, L, 4 goals; Sam Girgus, L, 2 goals; Cameron Girgus, L, 1 goal, 7 assists, 7 ground balls; Devan Hardwick, L, 1 assist, 3 ground balls; John Williams, L, 1 assist, 8 ground balls; Justin Girgus, L, 2 ground balls; David Dekoekkoek, L, 4 saves; Michael Ausilio, SJ, 3 goals, 7 ground balls; Ryan Guard, SJ, 1 goal, 3 assists, 1 ground ball; Alex Michael, SJ, 1 goal, 3 ground balls; Kyle Skoog, SJ, 2 goals, 1 ground balls; Forest Dayton, SJ, 1 assist, 5 ground balls; Bradly Sundberg, SJ, 1 ground ball; Weston Hedin, SJ, 2 ground balls; Calen Mehrer, SJ, 3 saves)

Notebook: Michael Ausilio was San Juan's WALAX.com player of the game. Ausilio scored three goals and recovered seven groundballs in Saturday's Division II state championship game.

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