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The Lions get a late goal from Reese Wasmund to beat the Pacers in the quarterfinals.

PMG PHOTO: MILES VANCE - West Linn junior Reese Wasmund smiles and shakes hands with a teammate after her goal in the third overtime period beat Lakeridge 8-7 in the state quarterfinals at West Linn High School on Thursday, May 26.Battling through their first state playoff in three years, the West Linn and Lakeridge girls lacrosse teams knew everything was on the line.

The Lions, hosting the Pacers in the quarterfinals of the OGLA state playoffs at West Linn High School on Thursday, May 26, rallied from a two-goal deficit in the final five minutes of the second half, forced the game into overtime and won 8-7 in the third extra period.

West Linn junior Reese Wasmund capped her team's win by scoring the winning goal in the third overtime period.

"That was insane," Wasmund said. "Honestly, it was just 'I need to take this. That's all that matters. I need to get the ball and I need to help my team.'"

"That was really fun. That was a really intense game," said junior Ella McKay, who led her team with three goals. "I've been in an overtime game before, but nothing like that. It was crazy."

With the win, third-seeded West Linn's sixth in its last seven games, the Lions improved to 14-3 overall after placing second in the Three Rivers League. Next up, the Lions will play at No. 2 Jesuit in the state semifinals at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 31. Sixth-seeded Lakeridge, meanwhile, lost for just the second time in its final six games and finished its season with an 11-7 overall record after placing third in the TRL.

"We just played our hearts out," said Lakeridge sophomore Chase Spiekerman, who scored once against West Linn. "We were sort of underdogs this game, but we knew it could be our seniors' last game so we just decided to give it our all on the field and I think we did that."

"Every single time, we've done better against them," said Lakeridge senior Alyson Buchholz, who led her team with three goals. "I think we pushed ourselves harder every time because we knew we could do better against them. I think that we had just as much of an opportunity to play with them and beat them."

The Pacers started fast on Thursday, pushing out to a 3-1 lead midway through the half, with Buchholz scoring once and teammate Avery French connecting back-to-back in a span of just 1 minute, 34 seconds.

But the Lions closed the half strong. They got a goal from Lila Skates, assisted by McKay, with 3:22 to go in the half, then another score to close within 4-3 when Brooklyn Schiele took a Skates pass and hit with just 15 seconds remaining in the period.

The Pacers were still ahead 6-5 when Buchholz spun to her right and scored on a low shot with 10:01 left in the second half, but Lakeridge couldn't hold that lead.

The Lions pushed in front 7-6 thanks to consecutive goals from Audrey Jacklyn and McKay in the final five minutes of the second half and appeared to be on the verge of victory.

But Spiekerman had other ideas. Following a late miss by West Linn, the Pacers pushed into the Lions' end of the field, and there, Spiekerman scooped up a ground ball and scored at the right post in the final second of the half to send the game into overtime tied at 7-7.

The goalies held the upper hand in OT, with West Linn's Lily Campbell stopping a pair of free position shots by Spiekerman in the first period, while Lakeridge's Caitlyn Reichow stopped a late shot by Samantha Bast at the end of the second session.

Finally, in the third OT, West Linn's Emerson Karl won a ground ball near midfield, and after the Lions advanced toward the Lakeridge goal, Wasmund was fouled by Pacer defender Mia Flood. From there, she attacked the goal from the right side and hit a short overhand shot to win the game.

"I could hear everyone kind of counting down and yelling and I got the ball," Wasmund said. "Immediately, as soon as I saw that ball hit the net, it was like 'Game over.' Best moment of the game. I ripped it. It was all or nothing."

As painful as their loss was, the Pacers knew they'd taken a big step forward in 2022.

"I think this year we had a lot of chemistry, especially since a lot of us played together on varsity the year before," Buchholz said. "Getting to play together this year, we were a lot stronger and we knew each other super well so we were able to see connections and know how everybody else plays on the field so we could work together better."

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