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LACROSSE: Lower Dauphin uses big second half in win over Cedar Crest

HUMMELSTOWN >> One Falcons team came out firing early Saturday morning. The other Falcons team caught fire late.

Backed by 10 second-half goals, including four from Taylor Bracale, Lower Dauphin erased a halftime deficit to defeat Cedar Crest, 14-12 in a back-and-forth contest at the Lower Dauphin Sports Complex.

Bracale's best effort didn't come on any of her team-high five tallies. Rather it came late in the second half, with the game knotted at 12-12, when she led the attack and found Lilly Woltman for the game-winning goal.

Cedar Crest fell to 7-8 with the loss and needs to win out in order to get a postseason berth.

"We started out really strong," Lebo said. "Second half, not as strong, but we came really strong in the first half. We knew this was going to be an evenly matched team with us.

"Our defense really shut them down in the first half. Second half, our offense didn't produce as much as we would've hoped, but I still think we played a great game. Nothing to be ashamed of. They are a good team."

After Bracale's first tally less than three minutes into the contest made it 1-0, Maddie Barron picked up a couple of quick goals to give Cedar Crest the lead. A minute after Barron's second goal, Nikki Wagner scored the first of her team-high five goals and it appeared that the Cedar Crest attack at taken all of the moment, especially when Wagner netted two more late in the half to make it 6-3.

But Lower Dauphin wasted little time after the intermission, with four straight goals to take an 8-7 lead with 16:51 to play. Sam Markley started the streak with a goal just 2:35 into the half, then less than a minute later, Bracale pulled LD within one, before Alli Bitting's goal tied it and Bracale broke the tie two minutes later.

"That really got them going," Lebo said. "They tied it up and I said we started overat 7-7, but we just couldn't finish there. Sometimes I think we let our emotions get to us and we just shut down a little bit at the end. Our defense was still doing a good job, a couple of miscues here and there, people not knowing who they were with."

Wagner and Abby Castor provided the scoring punch for Cedar Crest and gave her side a 12-11 lead with 5:55 remaining, but Markley and Woltman had the answer as Lower Dauphin closed with three straight goals for the win.

"We need to win out the rest of the way to still have a chance at district playoffs, this game would've been huge, but we're still looking OK if we can win out. The rest of our season is pretty easy for us," Lebo said.

Lower Dauphin 14, Cedar Crest 12

Lower Dauphin goals — Bracale (5), Bitting (1), Woltman (2), Harwin (2), Markley (4)

Cedar Crest goals — Barron (2), Wagner (5), Castor (4), Blatt (1)

Shots on goal — LD 30, CC 23.

Goalies — LD: Lammando (2 saves). CC: Serena Rodriguez (7).