Eagan dusted Park of Cottage Grove 19-8 in the Section 3 boys lacrosse championship game and that, coupled with Eastview’s loss to Prior Lake in the Section 3 final, gave the Wildcats the No. 1 seed in the state tournament that begins Tuesday.
The Wildcats (15-1) will open the tournament against a familiar opponent – South Suburban Conference rival Lakeville North, which plays Eagan at 5 p.m. Tuesday at Chanhassen High School. Lakeville North, the Section 1 champion, is 9-7 and enters the state tournament unseeded.
Last year the script was flipped – Lakeville North was the top seed and faced an unseeded Eagan team in the state quarterfinals. North won that game 14-11 on its way to second place in the tournament.
No other team in this year’s tournament has more than four losses, but Lakeville North’s record might be deceiving. Five of the Panthers’ losses were to teams that qualified for state – including a 12-8 loss to Eagan on May 23 – and five of them were by one or two goals.
North defeated Lakeville South 15-14 in the Section 1 championship game June 6 on Robby Gale’s overtime goal.
Eagan outscored three Section 3 opponents 58-23. The Wildcats scored the first seven goals of the championship game June 8 and were never threatened. Isaac Peifer and Brandon Wuertz scored five goals each for Eagan, and Cole Powell added three.
Other state quarterfinal games at Chanhassen are No. 3 seed Benilde-St. Margaret’s (14-2) playing Anoka (15-1) at 11 a.m., No. 2 seed Eden Prairie (15-1) facing Wayzata (11-4) at 1 p.m. and No. 4 seed Mahtomedi (15-1) playing No. 5 seed and defending state champion Prior Lake (13-3) at 3.
Prior Lake knocked off No. 1-ranked Eastview 6-5 in the Section 6 final June 8, giving the Lightning its first loss of the season and clearing the way for Eagan to get the top seed in the state tournament.
The Eagan-Lakeville North winner will play Mahtomedi or Prior Lake in the semifinals at 5 p.m. Thursday at Minnetonka High School. The state championship game is 6 p.m. Saturday, June 17, at Chanhassen High.
Farmington, making its first appearance in the state girls tournament, drew the fourth seed and will play fifth-seeded Stillwater in the quarterfinals at 3 p.m. Tuesday at Minnetonka High School. Both teams are 14-2; the Tigers beat Stillwater 7-6 on April 20 in their third game of the season.
The Farmington-Stillwater winner will play No. 1-seeded Eden Prairie or Blaine in the semifinals at 5 p.m. Thursday at Chanhassen High. Eden Prairie is the two-time defending state champion; Eden Prairie and Blake have won every championship since the Minnesota State High School League took over sponsorship of the state girls lacrosse tournament in 2007.