Three months ago, Twin Valley started the girls’ lacrosse season with one goal. Technically, there are three goals. Three championship banners. In other words, “3 banner years”.
Now, after winning the District 3 Class 2A Championship with Burks, the Raiders have an unprecedented goal when playing Archbishop Carroll at PIAA Class 2A Girls Lacrosse on the final Saturday at 4:30 pm at Westchester East High School. Try to achieve. ..
After defeating the Patriots (23-0), the Raiders (25-1) will be the first lacrosse team from Burks, Boys, or Girls to win the state title. They became the first to reach the championship game earlier this week.
“No one has ever reached this point in Berks County,” said Courtney Kaplan, coach of Twin Valley. “We are a public school that opposes a large private school and we have nothing to lose except to go out and give everything we have.”
Archbishop Carroll, the champion of District 12, is a national advocate. Twin Valley has been vulnerable for the first time in a long time as it has won 262 consecutive games in the Catholic League and will face the team that defeated the Raiders 14-8 in last year’s semifinals.
“We are weak,” Kaplan said. “It asks our girls to play a near-perfect game, and they have to recover from them to know that they will make mistakes, and that will happen. You need to know that.
“We are united as a team and we hope that field support and balance will help us overcome those difficult times.”
With a talented roster returning home and six seniors who have played most of their careers together, the Raiders are a dynamic team of mind and chemistry. According to Annakaplan, senior team captain and Burks player of the year, the Twin Valley team is ready to embrace the underdog spirit in the biggest game of their lives.
“My freshman year was vulnerable throughout the season,” said Anna Kaplan, daughter of Courtney. “All of our league games were (at that time) a challenge, so it’s like going back and starting over, but only for bigger games and bigger titles.”
Three years have passed since Kaplan’s freshman year, and the Raiders are far from the weak on paper. With 423 goals and 123 goals, Twin Valley boasts the top goal difference in Burks and has advanced to this moment over the last four seasons.
“Obviously, defeating a bigger team and winning it with all of them (my teammates) is the biggest motivation you can have,” said Anna Kaplan.
Last year, the Raiders were Burks champions, but fell into the district championship game to York Catholic and then Archbishop Carroll. Twin Valley has already checked one team from a revenge tour when it defeated York Catholic 14-13 in this year’s district final.
Defeating Archbishop Carroll will be the upper limit for the Raiders’ three banner years.
“We’re excited. I’ve said it’s revenge because of last year,” said senior defender Emma Windsor.
Windsor, who won the state title on the Twin Valley Field Hockey Team in the fall, is no stranger to the biggest stages of the postseason. She said she believes the influence of team chemistry is as important as when the Raiders defeated Gwinned Mercy 3-2 in the PIAA Class 2A field hockey final.
“Everyone will be nervous about this game when they come in,” Windsor said. “But being in control of them and knowing that everyone around the team is on the same boat is a relief because we’re together. For field hockey and lacrosse, that’s the same. The chemistry of the team is very close on both sides, and for lacrosse we have been trained and have long wanted this, so I think we are ready for it. increase.”
As if the championship stage wouldn’t get any bigger in Twin Valley, the six seniors would attend the graduation ceremony early Saturday morning before moving to Westchester. PIAA changed the start time from 10 am to 4:30 pm at the beginning of the week after learning that it coincided with the Raiders graduation ceremony.
“It’s an emotional roller coaster and there’s light at the end of the tunnel,” said Courtnikaplan. “I try to be there wherever my feet are and enjoy the moment. And with Anna, I’m very fortunate to be her mom and her coach. She was literally the best and everything I could ask for in terms of both the player and the daughter, so I really want to celebrate this with her as much as possible.
“The graduation ceremony is just an audience. It’s an easy part. It’s time to go right after that.”
For Windsor, who plays field hockey at St. Joseph’s University in the fall, the game serves as a graduate of his career at lacrosse.
“It will be a busy day,” Windsor said. “It’s basically all about graduating and joining the final game with a second family.”
While Twin Valley is heading for the game behind years of ambition and unity, Raiders is also supported by local communities as well as graduates from outside the region who have heard about the success of the program.
“We received a letter from a 1962 graduate from Twin Valley. Her daughter did lacrosse in 1987, so she made a donation to take the girl out,” says Courtney Kaplan. I did. “They heard about our news, and we are very happy, so people all over the world are reaching out and I continue to provide it to them (teams). , Much bigger for us. “
Regardless of Saturday’s results, there is no doubt that Twin Valley has solidified its position as a girl’s lacrosse powerhouse. Winning the coveted third banner will be a picture-perfect ending for a team that has already established itself in the history of Barks’ lacrosse.
“I think this program has grown tremendously since my freshman year,” said Anna Kaplan. “It helped build the entire lacrosse community, and as youth players came to us and helped with youth practices and clinics, it became so strong and really a close community. think.
This is where we are today and I hope that by doing tomorrow we will be able to make some history again. “
In the spirit of the weak, Twin Valley seems to make history in the PIAA Girls Lacrosse Championship Game
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