Now retired from the NFL, Ray Lewis apparently must now resort to providing pregame speeches for girls lacrosse teams. Only Lutherville-Timonium (Md.) St. Paul's School for Girls couldn't replicate the Baltimore Ravens' improbable march to a championship.
The 13-time Pro Bowler's daughter Diamond attends St. Paul's, so Lewis sent a cell phone video to the girls lacrosse team before its private school state title showdown with three-time defending U.S. Lacrosse national champion Owings Mills (Md.) McDonogh School, owners of a 90-game winning streak entering the contest (h/t MaxPreps).
Here's a transcript of the speech courtesy of PressBoxOnline.com:
St. Paul Gators -- where you are now, you are supposed to be. Now it's up to you to complete the race. But you want to complete the race by looking each other in the eyes and ask yourself one question. What will I give up for the person that's beside me? What will I sacrifice?
What will I sacrifice? Not for a win or a loss, just for the opportunity to play and say we did it. Whatever your fate is, it's already done. That's why we're in the championship.
Go claim the glory -- the glory within your heart, the glory within your spirt. You'll do anything, anything to be with a teammate during this time. This is your time.
The motivational words nearly worked. The Gators led 8-4 with 15 minutes left, but McDonogh scored the final seven goals to secure another IAAM A Conference title and finish unbeaten this season, prolonging a 91-game winning streak that dates back to April 2009 and will remain the nation's longest for at least another year.
Oddly, former Ravens kicker Matt Stover's daughter Jenna helped lead the McDonogh comeback, according to PressBoxOnline.com. Stover and Lewis won a Super Bowl together in 2000. Lewis' daughter Diamond does not play lacrosse for St. Paul's.
"Speaking of the Ravens," St. Paul's coach Brooke Kuhl-McClelland told the Maryland-area online publication, "Scott said before the game this is like John and Jim Harbaugh in the Super Bowl. We're like a big family."
In a way, he's right. In 2000, McDonogh coach Chris Robinson hired Kuhl-McClelland as an assistant while serving as head coach at Ellicott City (Md.) Mount Hebron High. Robinson's MHHS tenure culminated in a five-game winning streak before he handed the reigns over to Kuhl-McCllelland, who proceeded to win 98 consecutive games and establish the reported national record of 103 straight.
Next spring, Robinson's McDonogh squad will shoot for that mark -- shared with Hampton (Md.) Loch Raven High's teams from 1973-82 -- without 17 seniors from this year's team, according to MaxPreps. The Eagles will still have weapons, like University of Maryland-bound junior Megan Whittle, who scored three goals in the comeback title win.
"We have a lot of depth and play a lot of kids," Robinson told MaxPreps. "Eventually we just wore them down. Our kids thrived under pressure. It was pretty impressive."
It had to be in order to thwart a team inspired by the mythical words of Ray Lewis.