It took a team, a well-executed plan and a few pounding hearts.

But by game’s end Saturday, the Scarborough girls’ lacrosse team defended its Class A state championship, beating Brunswick 13-11 for the title in one tight finish at Fitzpatrick Stadium.

The Red Storm pulled ahead from what was mostly a one-goal game in a key sequence with about 12 minutes to play, then stretched their lead to four goals with 1:35 left on the clock.

With cheers of “Yes we can” rising from the bleachers, Brunswick’s Dakota Foster went on a three-goal scoring spree to cut the deficit to 12-11 with 24.7 seconds left.

But the Red Storm won the final draw, worked the ball upfield in the most key possession of the day, and Dani Foster scored into an empty net with two seconds to play, taking a feed from Meghan Quirk.

Game over. Title defended.

“I didn’t feel relieved a single second until the final buzzer went off,” said junior attack Laura Przybylowicz. “It’s incredible. We knew we needed to come out and work this hard.”

Scarborough trailed 3-1 about 12 minutes into the game. The Red Storm tied it within minutes, then the teams traded leads multiple times until a two-goal sequence with about 12 minutes to play.

Maggie Smith had broken a 7-7 tie with a score on a feed from Kat Gadbois with 13:40 left. Then Przybylowicz followed a shot on a free position by Smith, scooped the rebound and scored to make it 9-7 with 12:11 to go.

Just 25 seconds later, Przybylowicz scored again on a wraparound to make it 10-7.

The lead grew as big as 12-8 after an open-net score by speedy Mary Scott. Brunswick had pulled its goalie to join the attack, then turned over the ball in the defensive zone.

Foster then scored three times in the span of a single minute — punctuated by a Scarborough timeout.

“I thought we were sitting on the lead just a little bit,” said Scarborough Coach Marcia Wood. “This game was all about draw control and possession.

“We didn’t really know what to expect from Brunswick and I think it served us well.”

The Red Storm won the final draw, worked the clock down and sprinted to goalie Meg Kirsch as time ran out.

“Those last minutes were pretty nerve-wracking, but it was nice to be challenged and still find a way to win,” said Howard.

Brunswick Coach Beth Caputi said she was proud of her team

“Dakota. What a battler,” Caputi said of Foster. “I’m so proud they can feel really good about this game. Scarborough probably has some speed on us. They were able to contain us on defense. But my girls did everything we asked them to do. We were weary but didn’t give up.”

Smith and Przybylowicz led Scarborough’s scoring with three goals apiece.

The team also got two each from Kelsey Howard, Quirk and Scott and the late empty netter from Foster.

The win was particularly special, said Wood, because a lot of her team was on the sideline last year for the title game, an 11-7 win over Mt. Ararat.

“The girls were really calm today,” said Wood. “We got great shots off. We were smart on attack. And this is a different group, so you just want them to feel it.”

Brunswick got four goals from Foster, two each from Caroline Wild and Corrine O’Connor, and one apiece from Annie Kelley and Lydia Caputi.

Staff Writer Jenn Menendez can be contacted at 791-6426 or at:

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