There are four 12-minute quarters in high school boys' lacrosse. Sometimes, a team dominates for all 48 minutes. Other times, a team's play in one quarter is the deciding factor.
Just ask the Radnor Red Raiders.
They lost Saturday, 16-13, in a PIAA District 1 quarterfinal to second-seeded Abington (19-0) at Harriton High. The seventh-seeded Red Raiders (13-7) were outscored, 6-2, in the second quarter after making a quick start and then trailing by only one after the first quarter.
"That second quarter was a slow quarter for us, and I think that's what killed us," said Radnor attack Spencer Lussier, who scored three goals but also injured his hand, making it difficult for him to cradle the ball for the last three quarters.
The speed and agility of Abington's attacks devastated the Radnor defense; the Ghosts scored four consecutive goals and stretched their lead to 8-3.
"For some reason, all year we start off slow and then just kind of pick it up," said sophomore Ryan Ambler, who had two goals and four assists for the Ghosts. "Something clicks in our heads, and [they] start making shots, nice plays, and holding the ball a little bit more."
"Unfortunately, the difference in the game was the second quarter," Radnor coach John Beiger said. "They got on a run, and we couldn't answer it.
"You need the ball to be able to have opportunities. We didn't have the ball in the second quarter," he added.
The Red Raiders, who at one point trailed by seven, made a run late in the fourth, scoring three unanswered goals, but fell short.
Hofstra-bound senior Rich Rambo scored a game-high five goals for the Ghosts, including three in a two-minute stretch during the second quarter.
Teammate Joey Jones, also headed to Hofstra, had four goals and three assists, and freshman Matt Rambo added four goals and an assist.
"I think our offensive starting six is too strong for anyone to cover, or match up with," Rich Rambo said.
Midfielders Harry Lawrence and Ben Junior each had three goals for Radnor.
"We won, but we didn't play our best game, and we know that," Abington coach Randy McNeill said. "We didn't play smart mentally, and it showed. Need to clean it up to go further."
The Ghosts will play in the semifinals Tuesday against Conestoga, a team that beat them last year. The game is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Ridley High.
"Looking for a little revenge, hopefully," McNeill said.
Radnor 3 2 4 4 – 13
Abington 4 6 3 3 – 16
Goals: R-Harry Lawrence 3, Ben Junior 3, Spencer Lussier 3, Derrick Adger 2, Charlie Rubin 2; A-Rich Rambo 5, Joey Jones 4, Matt Rambo 4, Ryan Ambler 2, Anthony Hensley.
Saves: R-Brendan Manderack 5; A-Jesse McGinley 12.