Cardinal Gibbons wins fourth straight girls lacrosse title, downs Charlotte Catholic
The Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders used a big second half to beat the Charlotte Catholic Cougars and claim their fourth consecutive NCHSAA girls’ lacrosse state championship.
The Crusaders struggled to find their game in the first half, as Catholic was able to successfully limit the Gibbons attack and capitalize on their own chances.
Catholic was the only team to hold a lead in the first half, as they led 1-0, 2-1, 3-2, 5-3 and 6-5.
“I never once doubted our ability,” Caroline Kimel said. “I think it just took us a second to adjust to what they were throwing at us, and once we did we came out victorious.”
Each time, the Crusaders had an answering goal to get even.
Kylie Skovira and Katilin Coleman had two goals each for the Cougars in the first half, while Caroline Kimel was the only Crusader to score twice in the half.
Ella Reaves Vaughan, Catherine Field, Grace New and Caroline Mullahy also tallied for the Crusaders.
Gibbons’ ability to stay in the game even when Catholic was imposing its will on the game proved to be a key as momentum shifted in the second half.
“Can’t tell you my secret sauce,” head coach Patricia Alexander said with a laugh about what happened at halftime. “But I will say that it starts at 0-0 and it was a tied game, and I think that they realized that if they really wanted to achieve what they set in their mind, that they had to start with the draw and do the little things in support, and there was no being tired.”
The Crusaders scored three goals in a span of 1:08 to take a 9-6 lead right out of the gate in the second half. The goals came from Bailey Mutch, Kimel and Mullahy.
Mutch scored three more in the half for a total of four for the game to help Gibbons create the separation they needed to put the game away.
The win means that the senior class of Kimel, Field, New, Reaves Vaughan and Tara Dorsett won the state championship in each of their four years in the program.
“I think of it as our legacy,” New said. “And like our family, we got a video this morning from my seniors my freshman year and juniors and people that were before me... and they all sent us a video wishing us luck and it just shows, this is our legacy and it comes from hard work and family and just putting in the extra hours.”