D2 GIRLS LACROSSE: Abington Heights and Crestwood ready for epic rematch in Class 2A final

Abington Heights players have likely thought about this rematch for almost an entire year, and now it is here.

After giving an exhausting effort, the Lady Comets endured the agony of a tough defeat in the District 2 Class 2A Championship last season against a talented and explosive Crestwood team. They threw a scare into a team that extended its consecutive title wins to three straight.

But the girls in the blue uniforms, who fought back tears, started the work to get back almost immediately.

On Thursday, third-seeded Abington Heights (15-3) returns to face No. 1 Crestwood (17-3) in a showdown for gold and a ticket to the PIAA girls lacrosse playoffs. The two powerhouse teams face off at 5:30 p.m.

"I am so excited because this team has really come a long way, and this is going to be a great game," Abington Heights goalie Sophia Santarsiero said. "This is the game that we have been working for, and we really have to work together and try our best.

"We can't let the pressure get to us, and we just have to play our game."

In last season's District 2 championship game, Isabella Caporuscio, who now plays at Stony Brook, scored seven goals in Crestwood's 12-8 win that secured a third straight title.

Caly Yankow scored three goals and had an assist, and Bella DeRiggi had a goal to lead Abington Heights.

Both teams used strong play in the second half to set up this much-anticipated rematch.

In the first meeting during the WVC season, Giavanna Caporuscio and Hannah Ziegler each scored three goals to lead Crestwood to a 9-8 win over Abington Heights in two overtimes.

Jackie Gallagher scored two goals, and goalie Morgan Koons had seven saves for Crestwood.

Allie Rothenberger had four goals and two assists, and DeRiggi had three goals and an assist in the first setback of the season for Abington Heights.

Crestwood did not have the services of Caporuscio, who is injured, in a 14-7 win over Scranton Prep in the semifinals. Jordan Andrews scored five goals, Koons recorded the 500th save of her career, and Gallagher and Ziegler each added four goals.

Abington Heights reached the final as Rothenberger and DeRiggi each scored four goals, and Santarsiero had 15 saves.

This season, DeRiggi has 48 goals and 26 assists, and Santarsiero has 110 saves.

"This is really super exciting," DeRiggi said. "We are all looking forward to traveling to Crestwood for this rematch. Crestwood is a really skilled game, and it is always a very competitive and fun game. We have been working hard these past couple of weeks and playing some good lacrosse. I think that we are ready to showcase our skills and have a good game.

"Our defense has been phenomenal, and our offense has been good. We just have to pull everything together, and if we do, we can have the outcome that we want."