With five minutes left in the game, Steve Gagliardi bulldozed his way from midfield to the net, charging through and around defenders before depositing a goal and ending Kingsway's momentum.
"I'm finally starting to feel like I'm getting into a groove on the field," said Gagliardi, who had missed the first four games of the season because of a concussion.
That sentiment also could apply to his Washington Township boys' lacrosse team after it hung on for an 8-7 win Satruday in the Gloucester County Cup semifinals.
"This is the win we've been waiting for," said Washington Township's first-year coach, Dan Fowler.
The Minutemen (7-6) have beaten teams they thought they should be beating and lost against some of the top squads in South Jersey.
But Saturday's win over Kingsway (8-5), ranked No. 8 in South Jersey by The Inquirer, represents a step in the right direction for the Minutemen, who will face a team to be determined in next Saturday's Cup final.
"We're getting a lot better as the season goes on," Gagliardi said. "Everyone is feeling good, and we expect to keep this going."
Gagliardi led the team with three goals, and Washington Township received solid production in each third of the field. Six players scored for the Minutemen.
Sophomore goalie Chris Burns (13 saves) stood out against a strong Kingsway offense.
Burns "has been a bright spot for our defense all year," Fowler said. "He's been making big save after big save. He's only a sophomore, but he's one of our vocal leaders. We couldn't ask for more out of him, especially as a sophomore."
Washington Township took its first lead late in the first quarter. The advantage stretched to four on a goal by Jordan Dziergowski in the first minute of the fourth quarter.
Two quick scores by the Dragons' Tim Kemner, who recorded five goals and an assist, made for a tense sequence in the game's final five minutes."
"But it was really nice to see us hang on," Fowler said. "I think what we needed, more than anything, was to be on the winning side of that one-goal game against a strong opponent.
"It gives us something to be excited about. It gives us confidence, and it makes us believe."
Washington Township 3 1 2 2 - 8
Kingsway 1 2 0 4 - 7
Goals: WT-Steve Gagliardi 3, Wyatt Miller, T.J. Mulderig, Ryan Hunsicker, Ryan Maiden, Jordan Dziergowski; K-Tim Kemner 5, Matt Mckernan, Vinnie Morgan.
Saves: WT-Chris Burns 13; K-Connor Beers 9.