By David Wagner
In recent years both boys and girls soccer and lacrosse have enjoyed plenty of success. Things haven’t changed much. All four teams claimed conference championships and advanced to the regional playoffs.
On May 16 the varsity boys Soccer team hosted Monticello High School for Senior Night. Looking to make amends for a 2-2 tie earlier in the season, the Class of 2016 took the bull by the horns and led the Warriors to a convincing 8-0 win over the Mustangs. All eight goals were scored by seniors, with Aidan Sinclair leading the way, notching three goals. Mark Ferguson scored twice, including a 25-yard free kick bender over the wall and Dylan Cooke, Santi Campos-Lopez and Jake Paulson scored once each.
Western carried that momentum into the conference playoffs, winning three consecutive games to claim the title while only allowing one goal over that span. They ousted Fort Defiance in the first game, 4-1, behind four more senior goals (Will Thomas 2, Sinclair 1 and Carrington Murphy 1) and cruised to the title.
The Warriors faced Christiansburg in the first round of the regional playoffs on Tuesday, May 31, that was too late for this edition of the Gazette.
In boys lacrosse, the Warriors also carried Senior Night momentum into the playoffs, securing a huge 11-6 win over the Albemarle Patriots. Seniors Carter Elliot, Luke Reilly, Oliver Herndon and Jackson Sours led the Warriors. Elliot and Reilly each scored three goals, Herndon scored one goal with two assists and Sours had 14 saves in goal. Sophomore John Carr Haden scored four goals. The Warriors cruised through the conference playoffs, beating Fluvanna 16-1 and Charlottesville 21-10.
In the first round of the regional playoffs Western hosted Midlothian. After falling behind 3-0 early in the game, the Warriors rallied with four straight goals to end the first quarter leading 4-3. Haden, Ryan Albee and James Buetow scored in the second quarter to give Western a 7-4 lead at the half and they won going away, 13-6.
In the regional semi-finals the Warriors traveled to Salem on Memorial Day. Salem beat the Warriors at Western in the season opener (10-9 in O.T.) but it was a different story this day. Western defeated Salem on their home turf, 19-4. Western traveled on Thursday, June 2 versus an undetermined opponent at the time of this printing.
Girls soccer made quick work of conference playoff opponents as well. After struggling to score through the first 60 minutes of their opening round match-up with Fort Defiance, sophomore Abigail Zimmerman scored twice in three minutes (the first of those two on a header of a corner kick from Cameron Hucek) to give Western the 2-0 win. The Warriors then beat Fluvanna 6-0 in the semis before beating Broadway in the championship game 3-0 on goals by sophomores Katrine Berg, Caitlin Harvey and junior Ava Coles.
On Memorial Day they hosted Staunton River in the first round of the 3A West Regionals and grounded the Eagles 6-0. The Warriors scored three goals in the first five minutes of the game and made easy work of the Eagles. Harvey scored two goals and had two assists and Elizabeth Fabiano, Julia Berg, Shannon Moore and Zimmerman all scored once.
This win set the Warriors up for a big showdown with Blacksburg High School in the region semi-finals. Blacksburg beat the Warriors last year 1-0 in the state finals and the winner of this game will most likely make a run to the championship game again this year. That game was played on Wednesday, June 1 and was too late for this edition.
Girls lacrosse also carried Senior Night momentum through the playoffs. The Warriors hosted CHS May 10 and blew the Black Knights out 15-1. Junior Hanna Schuler scored five goals, senior Sammie Magargee had two goals and four assists, senior Kate Snyder had two goals, senior Hannah Curry had one goal and two assists and sophomore Kira Repich had two goals. Western faced CHS again in the conference semi-finals and won 14-1. It was a total team effort, with 12 different Warriors scoring goals.
In the conference finals Western faced Monticello in a highly contested match-up. The Warriors came away with a triple overtime, 15-14 win that wasn’t easy. After Western took a 9-3 lead in the first half, Monticello came storming back. The Mustangs scored six consecutive goals to tie the game at 9-9. Monticello’s Summer Larese scored all but the first of those six goals and proceeded to score back-to-back-to-back goals later in the second half to tie the game at 12-12 after Western took a 12-9 lead. In the end, Magargee won the draw control to start the third overtime, racing all the way to the goal to win the game in dramatic fashion for the Warriors. Repich scored five goals, oneassist and Magargee ended up with three goals and two assists for the game. Schuler scored threegoals also.
That catapulted Western into a regional playoff game at home against the Hanover Hawks. Western won impressively, 16-4. Margargee again had a big day with four goals, one assist; Repich three goals, two assists; Snyder three goals, one assist; Hannah Plantz, two goals, two assists; Schuler two goals, one assist; and sophomore Anne Patterson scored twice. The Hanover win advanced Western to the region semi-finals where they hosted Hidden Valley in Crozet on May 31, too late for this edition.