Bishop Guertin outlasts Bedford for girls lacrosse championship

MANCHESTER – Kayli Keenan remembers winning it all as a freshman. That was from the sidelines. Four years later, the Bishop Guertin senior was not just on the field for the Cardinals in a title game, she was scoring the two biggest goals of her high school career.

Keenan found the back of Bedford’s net to even the score with 38.4 seconds to play in regulation, and followed it up with the game-winner 42 seconds into sudden-death overtime to propel the Cardinals past the Bulldogs 10-9 in Wednesday night’s Division I girls lacrosse final at Manchester Memorial.

With the game on the line, Keenan wanted the ball. She had already knotted the score 9-9 to force the extra session, and when the Cardinals gained possession in overtime, Keenan spoke up during a timeout.

“I said to them, ‘Guys, I’m feeling hot right now. This is my last game ever as a Bishop Guertin Cardinal. We need to show them what we’re made of.’

“And I told them, ‘If we get the ball on this draw, which I know we will, I want the ball.’ I didn’t say that to be selfish, I just felt so hot and confident and I wanted the ball.”

She got what she asked for, and finished things off.

The Cardinals spread out in the offensive zone on that game-winning possession. Keenan collected a pass atop the circle, made an initial move toward the net before backing out. Holding onto the ball, Keenan made another drive attempt – faking a pass, dodging a defender and depositing the ball into the lower left of the net for the win.

The beginning of the game had all the signs that a blowout was about to take place.

The Cardinals scored four goals in 11 minutes and looked unstoppable. Bedford had other plans, swinging momentum in the other direction with five unanswered goals to close out the first half up 5-4.

Hannah McCarthy led the Bulldogs offense, scoring the tying goal in the first and recording the team’s final three goals in regulation – including what many thought was the game-winning goal with 1:25 to play.

Bishop Guertin coach Kerry Gobiel wasn’t ready to give up, and neither were her Cardinals.

“We had some down moments, we had some up moments,” Gobiel said, “but it’s always believing in yourselves.”

Emily Santom led BG’s offense with four goals, while Madison Keating, Amelia Piercy, Lindsay Hult, Claire Donovan and Katie Lupo chipped in with one each, to go along with Keenan’s two.

McCarthy scored four to lead Bedford, while Courtney Dermody added two, and Mackenzie Chou, Chamberlaine Bell and Mary Kyle tallied one each.