Bishop Guertin triumphs over Pinkerton for girls lacrosse crown
HOOKSETT – With 1,000 or so of her closest friends, well about half were her fiercest enemies, watching intently, Abigail Ahearn had the ball in her stick, the Division I state championship hanging in the balance, and only 24 seconds left on the clock.
“Faking and placing, that was all I could think about,” said the calm, cool and chill Bishop Guertin Cardinal.
“Surprisingly, it felt almost natural because of what we’ve practiced. Of course, there is intimidation with all the fans and the moment.”
Ahearn broke an 11-11 tie with the free-position goal, giving Bishop Guertin its second straight Division I title over top-seeded Pinkerton Academy, 12-11.
“We made school history,” noted BG coach Kerry Gobiel, admitting that the second title was even sweeter than the 2018 crown.
“I couldn’t picture a better person in the free position. She’s fast, committed, focussed and playing her best lacrosse right now.”
Ahearn capped a superb individual playoff run with a pair of goals in a night where BG led from the start and carried a 7-4 lead into the break.
The Astros, who fell to BG 16-12 in the regular season (Pinkerton’s loss of the year), had only just begun to fight.
Lily Auger’s fourth goal of the night knotted the score at 8-8 17:09 left, setting things up for a wild finish.
From there, they traded goals, with Kiley Davis putting Pinkerton up 11-10 with only 2:50 to play.
Pinkerton got the draw and looked in control, with BG needing a break.
The Cardinals made their own luck with Abby Hayhurst coming up with the steal of the season, turning things around at the 1:25 mark.
Guertin made sure on offense and Lindsay Hult tied the score with just 48 seconds left.
Hult was huge once more, claiming the draw, allowing Ahearn and Co. to go for the kill.
“Real frantic. Again, it’s about our grit and determination,” said Gobiel, whose champs finish up at 19-2. “There were a lot of high pressure situations, but it’s the stuff we work hard on all the time in practice. We push them very hard every day.”
Rylee Bouvier led the balanced BG attack with three goals. Ahearn, Madison Keating, Emily Santom and Hult had two apiece. Claire Donovan had one as well.
Makenna Reekie made 10 saves for the win in goal.