Sunset gets third chance at Lincoln lacrosse

The Apollos and Cardinals will meet in the state finals for the third straight year
May 29, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning,
Sunset's Pat Campbell celebrates a 4-3 win over Lake Oswego Wednesday.
Photo by Cliff Pfenning,

A pair of thrilling semifinals produced a familiar result as Sunset and Lincoln emerged to face each other for the third straight year in the final of the Oregon High School Lacrosse Association championship match.

Sunset edged hard-luck Lake Oswego 4-3 in one semi, while top-ranked Lincoln beat No. 2 Lakeridge 10-8 in the other semi played at Wilsonville High School Wednesday.

Sunset will be looking to avenge losses the previous two years in the title match, while Lincoln will be looking for its fourth title in five years.

"Third time's a charm," Sunset coach Jeff Dill said. "We're looking forward to playing them."

"They've given us quite a game the past two years, so we're not overlooking them at all," Lincoln coach Will Harris said. "We know they'll be gunning for us."

Sunseet and Lincoln will meet at 7 p.m. Saturday at Wilsonville High.

Lakeridge, which has won eight state titles, lost in the semifinals for the third consecutive year, while Lake Oswego lost for the third time in four years. The Lakers, among the state's top teams for years, has not been to a championship game.

Sunset, which is still without a title since championship matches began in 1997, overcame a shaky first half and 2-0 deficit with four goals in the third quarter, including a score in the final second by senior Cole Abdie. The Lakers, who dominated the first half, but were only able to ring up two scores, were unable to overcome Sunset's tightly-packed zone defense and succumbed to a familiar fate.

Freshman Locke Rohan, who entered the game in the second quarter when senior Tony Novoa cramped up, provided the key spark for Sunset with a goal in the second minute of the third quarter to cut the deficit to 2-1.

Lincoln, which had dispatched to playoff opponents by a combined score of 33-5, scored four unanswered goals in the third quarter for an 8-4 lead that seemed to salt the game away, but the Pacers rallied with three-straight scores and trailed just 8-7 early in the fourth quarter when senior attacker Grant Clifford scored for Lincoln to end the run.

Clifford had four goals for the Cardinals, who also got three scores from Spencer Rotenburg.

The Cardinals beat Lakeridge 10-8 in the semifinals two years ago.

Saturday's final pits a patient, defense-minded Sunset squad against a composed, assertive Lincoln squad that will take the field with a 20-game win streak and having lost just one game to an Oregon team in the past two seasons.