, Salem, MA


August 20, 2013

Fantasy Matchups: 2003 Beverly vs. 2010 St. John's Prep lacrosse

Picking a winner between the area's two best-ever lacrosse teams no easy task


St. John’s had multiple chances late in that ‘09 title game. Campbell stepped in the crease to eliminate a scoring opportunity and Blackwell caught a long pass in front of the net in the dying moments, but couldn’t get a shot off. The 13-12 setback was a punch to the gut.

“I think when I got there freshman year we were kind of in the building phase. I think we laid the foundation and it really started to set in my junior year,” said Campbell, now heading into his senior year at Harvard. “Losing by one my junior year, I think that gave a lot of younger guys extra motivation: ‘We got here and we can do it again.’ We didn’t lose that many players ... and we really capitalized when we got back there.”

Two for the ages

In the summer of 2009 The Salem News ranked Beverly’s 8-7 title-clinching win over Duxbury as the greatest North Shore high school game over the previous 20 years, and rightfully so. The game had everything: a bursting-at-the-seams Hurd Stadium, the two best lacrosse teams in the state, and a fantastic finish.

It was estimated that more than 6,000 fans squeezed into Hurd that afternoon, and every one of them got their money’s worth. Beverly held a tight lead through most of the first half and began to get separation in the second half, leading 8-5 in the fourth quarter.

Duxbury mounted a comeback and Tom Levesque cut Beverly’s lead to one with 33 seconds left. Levesque had an opportunity to tie in the final seconds, but Kline knocked the ball away to preserve the victory.

“It continues to grow historically,” former Beverly coach Peter Ginolfi told The Salem News in 2009. “Duxbury has won every state championship since that game, and had one more before. It would have been eight straight if we had not won that one.

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