WELLESLEY — As the Medfield girls’ lacrosse team has pieced together its best season in a decade, it’s been anything but a smooth and stress-free journey.
The Warriors lost senior captains Annie McCarthy and Isabella Iannone to ACL tears earlier this season and standout midfielder Grenne Campbell to a broken arm in the state semifinal. Most teams’ chances would take a major hit with three elite players gone, but Medfield has proved it simply has a different level of depth.
It also has Kelly and Alex Blake. The Blakes, who are not related but appear to have telepathy on the field, combined for 10 goals Tuesday at Babson College — seven for sophomore midfielder Kelly and three for junior midfielder Alex. Together, they fueled Medfield to a 12-9 victory over Cohasset and a Division 3 state title, cementing the first state championship for the No. 2 Warriors (20-3) since 2012 and the second in program history.
“I woke up, and I was ready,” Kelly Blake said. “We’ve practiced and worked so hard for this. The past few weeks of playoffs we’ve been dreaming of it, and I knew deep down it was going to come true.”
The No. 8 Skippers (17-4-1), who knocked off top-seeded Newburyport and outlasted No. 4 Weston in the semifinals, led the Warriors, 6-5, at halftime. Junior attack Kira Fulton paced Cohasset with four goals, sophomore midfielder Laney Larsen added three, and goalie Aizza Chase did all she could. Cohasset hung around for most of the night, but Kelly Blake always had an answer.
After Cohasset freshman Reese Hansen sliced it to 9-8 Warriors, Kelly Blake delivered with 12:15 remaining to keep momentum on Medfield’s side. She added another one minute later, then she swooped in two-plus minutes after that to extend the margin to 12-8 with 3:44 to go.
Blake helped a Cohasset player up after colliding with her, then moments later she poked the ball free and caused a turnover to help start the celebration.
“She’s one that thrives under pressure,” Medfield coach Mary Laughna said of Kelly Blake. “She thrives under situations like this. I knew she was going to have a big game. She’s someone who can channel that intensity of a game, focus in, and take control.”
Laughna said the Warriors took time at halftime to remind themselves of who they are and how they can play. They regrouped, found their mojo, and leaned on the Blakes to seal a victory. Lillie Cumming, Lauren Schofield, and goalie Sophie Young also stepped up for the Warriors.
Cohasset coach Kully Reardon said the Skippers tried playing zone and face-guarding Kelly Blake, but nothing they did worked. Reardon called her the best player Cohasset has faced this season. Reardon credited her seniors for a stellar run but said the Skippers ran into a team that played better on this particular night.
When it was over, and the championship was sealed, the Warriors snuck up behind Laughna and doused her in water — Gatorade-bath style. They had dreamed of bringing Medfield back to the top all season, and now it was finally a reality.
Said Kelly Blake: “It’s just so rewarding to come out with a state championship after 10 years.”
Trevor Hass can be reached at email@example.com.