Manchester, NH - Southern New Hampshire University
Lakes started off Friday night as they have the past two years, playing Monadnock. The previous two years Lakes wasn't able to solve Monadnock as they tied 2-2 on both occasions. But this year would be different; it took them 11 minutes to score their first goal, by Gilford star Kellie Ryan, assisted by Tilton's star Tia Raspante. With a 1-0 lead going into the second half, Lakes finally solved Monadnock's defense and stopped their scoring ability, Makenzie Snow scored 6 minutes into the second half, assisted by Kaitlin Bardellini. Raspante racked up a goal 3 minutes later, and incoming freshman Ashlyn Toupin picked up the last goal. Snow and Bri Salanitro contributed with the assists for the last two goals. Goalies Riley Toupin and Kylee Warren split time, as they would for the all the games, Toupin had two saves and Warren with 3. They ended their first day with a well earned 4-0 victory, seven corners, and 12 shots on goal.
The first of two games would start at 10 am, against a solid Coastal team. Lakes scored early once again as Snow buried a shot 7 minutes into the match off of a corner, assisted by Salanitro. Lakes wouldn't get another goal until 7 minutes left in the game, by Erin Doherty, assisted by Jill Lachapelle, then another 4 minutes later to seal a 3-0 victory, scored by Olivia Conley, Nicole Berube picked up the assist. Riley Toupin had five saves, Kylee Warren had two. The team ended with ten corners and nine shots on goal.
Their second game against Southern and their last game of pool play started off a little scary, as they went down early 2-0. Lakes scored 5 minutes before halftime, as Ashlyn Toupin fed a through ball to Madison House, to go into halftime down 2-1. Then whatever happened during halftime, the Lakes flipped a switch and never looked back, Taylor Healey scored 40 seconds into the second half, assisted by Raspante, then they went on to score two more within the next 3 minutes, Ryan and Snow picked up the goals, and Bardellini picked up both assists. With a 4-2 lead, Salanitro scored with 5 minutes to go, assisted by Raspante, then a minute later Bardellini would finish off the scoring, with an assist from Salanitro, as they finished with a 6-2 comeback win. Riley Toupin picked up four saves, Warren picked up 6, making some excellent diving saves in the second half. Lakes finished with six corners, 13 shots on goal, a perfect pool record of 3-0-0, giving them a guaranteed spot in Sunday's finals.
With a rematch set at 11:20 am, with Coastal, Lakes looked to be the favorite to take it home, but Coastal came out strong and earned corners right off the rip, but weren't able to produce anything. With 13 minutes to go in the first half, Raspante would score the first goal, off a Berube pass, and take a 1-0 lead into halftime. 90 seconds into the second half Ryan would score another, assisted by Hallie McNamara. Coastal would have a chance to get back in it off a corner, but the goal was called back due to the dangerous height of the ball. After that Coastal never got another chance and the Lakes' defense saw out the game to take the final 2-0 and claim back to back Granite State Games' titles. Riley Toupin made four saves in the first half, while Warren only saw one shot in the second half. Lakes ended the game with five shots on goal and no corners.
The Lakes Region team was coached by Gilford head coach, Dave Rogacki, and his assistant Sarah Caveny. With this win, Rogacki won his 3rd consecutive final (2016 GSG, 2016 NHIAA D3, 2017 GSG). The team was made up of 22 total players, 20 field & 2 goalies. They had one D1 player, Concord's Erin Doherty. One D2 player, Merrimack Valley's Kylee Warren. Six Prep School players, Tilton's Tia Raspante, Katie Ruggles, Morgan Lebaron, Zoey Nash-Boucher, and Kaitlin Bardellini, and New Hampton's Taylor Healey. The other 14 were from D3, Winnisquam's Eveline Auger, Madison House, Ashlyn Toupin, McKayla Toupin, Riley Toupin, Kaylee Tierney, Makenzie Snow & Hallie McNamara, Laconia's twins Olivia & Gillian Conley, and Gilford's Nicole Berube, Bri Salanitro, Jill Lachapelle & Kellie Ryan.
Tilton's Tia Raspante was named Player of the Tournament. This was her second year as a captain for the team, she scored twice, had three assists, and seven points. Lakes finished with a perfect 4-0-0 (W-L-T) record, outscoring their opponents 15-2, earning 23 corners, and out shooting their opponents 39-27. Out of the 22 players, 12 will be graduating & won't be eligible to return next summer, but the other ten is eligible to return, if they so choose, and try for a three peat next summer.