By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
GRAND LEDGE – Many of the players on the field to start the second half of Saturday’s Division 2 Girls Lacrosse Final had played major roles when Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood won its first championship in the sport a year ago.
They weren’t about to settle for less.
The Cranes clutched a one-goal lead with 19 minutes to play, but scored 13 of the next 15 goals to finish with a much more comfortable 18-6 win over Okemos at Grand Ledge High School.
Four of the brightest stars from an accomplished group of eight seniors combined to score 11 of those second-half goals for Cranbrook, which also had finished Division 2 runner-up in 2015 and 2016.
“We had a little pep talk at halftime, which we do, and it really gets everyone pumped. And a lot of us, it was our last game of high school – and the girls who aren’t going to play in college, their last game ever,” Cranbrook senior Isabelle Scane said. “I think they just wanted something special, and I think that’s how we got the rally going. And once you get going, it’s almost impossible to stop.”
Scane – set to continue playing at Northwestern University – scored five goals, including four in the second half. She ended this season with 101 and closed her four-year varsity career with an MHSAA record 461, 185 more goals than the next player on the all-time list.
Senior Sophia Milia added three goals and five assists, the latter all during the second half. All four of senior Angelina Wiater’s goals and both assists also came over the final 25 minutes, while junior Jessica Geiger added two of her three goals and senior Delaney Langdon netted her score during the second half as well.
In the end, the Cranes’ 18 goals ranked as the fifth most in MHSAA Finals history – while they gave up what tied for the third fewest all-time.
“It was a matter of giving them a reality check – you don’t get to take this game back. You don’t have another chance at the state championship,” Cranes first-year coach Evan Foulsham said of the halftime chat. “You don’t get to wear the uniform again if you’re a senior.
“It was all a little bit of a heart check in terms of bringing out the passion, and I think it worked.”
Cranbrook finished 17-1-1, its only loss to Rockford, which won the Division 1 championship earlier Saturday.
The Cranes and Chiefs had faced off earlier this season, Cranbrook emerging a 14-10 victor. Okemos (19-4) in its Semifinal had avenged a regular-season loss (and three straight Semifinal defeats) to East Grand Rapids, and was seeking to flip one more past result to close the season.
Senior Alyssa Karber scored two goals for the Chiefs, who graduated nine contributors to this breakthrough run.
“I’m so lucky to have played with those girls growing up. I definitely think this year we took it to another level,” Okemos senior Melaina Grewal said. “The (senior) girls taught the younger girls a lot of things about how to push through, how to keep practicing, how to work hard, and this is just proof that you can end up where you want after you work hard – so I’m assuming that the younger girls’ work ethic will continue to be strong.”
PHOTOS: (Top) Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood raises the Division 2 championship trophy Saturday for the second straight season. (Middle) Cranbrook’s Sophia Milia (10) defends Okemos’ Campbell Foltz.
Bloomfield Hills advanced to the Division 1 Semifinals this spring with one of the highest-scoring lineups in MHSAA girls lacrosse history, and one of its most accomplished goalies.
The Black Hawks scored 325 goals – sixth-most on the list – in going 19-4. Ella Lucia, then a junior, posted 17 single-game record entries for goals, assists or points, finishing with 125 goals, 59 assists and 184 points and pushing her career numbers to 186 goals, 113 assists and 299 points over three seasons.
Teammate Ilana Watson, a senior this spring, was added eight times for single-game accomplishments and also for 71 goals, 64 assists and 135 points for the season and 102 assists and 205 points over her two-season career. Goalie Sydney Butler, now a senior, made the single-season saves list with 186 and the career list with 466 over her first three seasons. Marlee Watson, who also graduated in the spring, was added for seven goals in a game.
See below for more recent record book updates for girls lacrosse:
On April 25, 2022, Holland West Ottawa then-senior Ella Spooner scored 13 of her team’s 16 goals against Zeeland. Those 13 goals tied for fourth-most in one game and also placed her on the single-game points list. She is playing at Kalamazoo College.
Troy Athens’ Claire Balintfy piled up eight record book entries during her sophomore season in 2022. A goalie, she posted a career-high 22 saves to tie for eighth on the single-game list, on which she appears six more times. Her 231 saves over 18 games that season rank second on that list as well.
Lexie Springman took 12 shots and made eight in Portage’s 19-9 win over Grand Ledge on April 5. She was a senior at Portage Central and is continuing at Regis University in Colorado.
Haslett/Williamston’s Abby Russell opened her high school career March 22 with a record book-worthy performance. The Haslett now-sophomore made the single-game goals list with seven in her team’s 10-9 loss at Portage.
Okemos’ Bridget Cox was a sophomore during the 2021 season when she earned her first four record book entries. She made the single-game saves list three times with a high of 16, and totaled 157 saves over 18 games total.
Holly/Ortonville Brandon tallied three single-game entries this past season. Junior Dakota Pinson made the single-game goals list with 10 against Fenton/Linden on May 4. Junior teammate Lainey Lasky made the same list twice with seven goals both times, against Flushing on May 3 and Lake Fenton/Goodrich on May 16.
Through three seasons, Salem’s Mileena Cotter has earned 35 record book entries – including setting the single-game record with 18 goals April 6 against Saline. Her 123 goals over just 10 games this past season rank seventh, and her 257 goals over 30 career games rank ninth on that list. Her career-high 19 points on April 5 against Dexter rank second for points in a game. She’s committed to sign with Syracuse.
Pontiac Notre Dame Prep junior Emily Szalach earned a record book entry with her 11 goals against Warren Regina on May 15 during a 13-12 triple-overtime win. It was the first entry for NDP for girls lacrosse.
Lake Orion’s Quinn McElroy capped her three-season varsity career this spring with eight record book listings, including for 69 goals and 100 points over 16 games as a senior, and 172 goals and 224 points for her career. Teammate Morgan Vasquez made single-season lists with 66 goals and 81 points, as did Amelia Guccione with 50 goals. Ava Adkins joined McElroy and Vasquez with single-game qualifiers, hers for 15 saves in a game against Troy Athens on April 12. Vasquez is a senior and Guccione a junior this school year, and Adkins also graduated this spring. McElroy is playing at Grand Valley State.
A pair of Detroit Cass Tech senior standouts made single-game and season scoring lists this spring. Taylor Weston made the single-game goals list three times, with a high of eight, and for her 64 goals total over 15 games; she also earned a listing for her 53 goals as a junior in 2022. Teammate Kayla Carroll-Williams made the single-game list twice, both for scoring seven goals, and the single-season list for 62 goals over 15 games.
PHOTO Bloomfield Hills goalie Sydney Butler, center, prepares to stop a shot against Bloomfield Hills Marian on May 11. (Photo by Susan Adams Photography.)