Girls lacrosse: Granby battles but falls to top-seeded Greylock in Class C final

  • Granby’s Gabby Walz, shown here earlier this season against Northampton, had four goals in the Rams’ loss to Mount Greylock in Saturday’s Western Mass. Class C championship game at Berkshire Community College. STAFF FILE PHOTO/KYLE GRABOWSKI

For the Gazette
Published: 6/4/2022 9:37:24 PM
Modified: 6/4/2022 9:35:13 PM

PITTSFIELD – Eight minutes into the second half of the Western Mass. Class C championship game, the Granby girls lacrosse team found itself down by five goals to a Mount Greylock team that had outscored them by 25 goals during two regular-season losses.

The Rams and their new coach knew what they had to do. And while Granby battled back to make it a one-goal game, the top-seeded Mounties held the No. 2 seeds scoreless over the final nine minutes to lock up a 20-13 win on Saturday at Berkshire Community College’s Gene Dellea Field.

“Defense first, value the possessions,” Granby coach Peter White said. “When we have the ball, make sure we take care of it and don’t turn it over. We tend to not pass enough. When we don’t, we get a lot of stick checks, we lose it.”

Mount Greylock recorded its first-ever Western Massachusetts championship with the victory. Greylock had played in three previous MIAA Central/Western Massachusetts championship games, going 0-3 against Bromfield. The Mounties won a title for first-year coach Jeff Stripp.

"We made history today," said Ainsley Abel, who had four goals, including her 100th career tally, for the Mounties. "Greylock had never won Western Mass. in [girls] lacrosse, and so we wanted it. We had been runner-up for the last three years."

Abel led the Mounties with four goals. Sarah Polumbo, who scored 18 goals in a pair of regular-season wins over the Rams, managed three, but her work on faceoffs is what helped the Mounties build up a big lead, and the pull away after the Rams cut the Greylock lead to one goal in the second half.

The Rams were led by the dynamic duo of Ella Laliberte and Gabby Walz. Laliberte had a game-high seven goals, while Walz had four.

The win didn't come without some agita-inducing moments in the second half. After leading 11-8 at halftime, the Mounties scored two goals in the first 5 1/2, and it appeared as if they would cruise to victory. The second-seeded Rams had other ideas.

Greylock had played Granby twice in Valley League competition, with the Valley champion Mounties winning 21-10 and 22-8. Since then the Rams had a change of coaches with White taking over. So it would be fair to say that this wasn't exactly the same Rams team the Mounties had faced earlier in the year.

Granby midfielder Ari Klekotka scored the first of four unanswered goals, beating Mountie keeper Christy Rech with 15:15 left. When Walz scored on a free position shot, it was the fourth straight goal in a six-minute span, and all of a sudden, the Mounties were up by only one goal.

Abel's first goal, coming after a 5-1 Granby run, gave the Mounties a little breathing room. Exactly 33 seconds later, Polumbo was awarded a free position shot and beat goalie Liberty Conlin to make it 16-13. Then after winning the faceoff, Polumbo sent Abel off and running, and the junior found the back of the net for her 100th goal. More importantly, it turned a one-goal lead into a four-goal advantage for the Mounties.

The contest might have been different were it not for Rech. The Greylock goalie made a pair of huge saves on shots by Laliberte in the first two minutes of the second half. Had either of them gone in, the tenor of the game could have shifted in a big way.

The Mounties, now 17-3, take a five-game winning streak into the start of the MIAA Division 5 tournament. Greylock has won 12 of 13.

Greylock enters the Division 5 tournament as the No. 9 seed. The Mounties will host Lynnfield on Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. Granby, meanwhile is the No. 23 seed and the Rams will travel to 10th-seeded Tyngsborough for a Wednesday night game. After playing three times, the only way Greylock and Granby would see each other again would be to play in the state final.


Granby 7 6 — 13

Mount Greylock 11 9 — 20

Goals — Granby: Ella Laliberte 7, Gabby Walz 4, Ari Klekotka, Kelly-Lynne Kennedy. MG: Ainsley Abel 4, Sarah Polumbo 3, Lucy McWeeny 3, Zoe Armet 3, Tess Levesque 3, Phoebe Hughes 2, Lexi Politis 2.

Assists — G: Laliberte. MG: Politis 2, Polumbo, Abel, Armet, Levesque.

Sign up for our free email updates
Daily Hampshire Gazette Headlines
Daily Hampshire Gazette Contests & Promotions
Daily Hampshire Gazette Evening Top Reads
Daily Hampshire Gazette Breaking News
Daily Hampshire Gazette Obits
Daily Hampshire Gazette Sports
Daily Hampshire Gazette PM Updates
Daily Hampshire Gazette Weekly Top Stories
Valley Advocate Newsletter
Daily Hampshire Gazette Dining & Entertainment


Support Local Journalism

Subscribe to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, your leading source for news in the Pioneer Valley.

Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

23 Service Center Road
Northampton, MA 01060


Copyright © 2021 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy