Georgetown Prep boys’ lacrosse finishes in a familiar spot: atop The Post’s final rankings


Georegtown Prep celebrated another victory over rival Landon in the Interstate Athletic Conference title game on May 17. (Mark Gail/For The Washington Post)

Certain expectations are woven into the threads of a Georgetown Prep lacrosse jersey. When you wear one, you’re expected to win. Just as importantly, you’re expected not to lose. You’re expected to want to beat Landon more than anything, and you’re expected to do it. You’re expected to be one of the country’s best teams, and to be disappointed with anything less.

After two down years with more losses that usual (six each) and no Interstate Athletic Conference titles, Georgetown Prep rose to all of those expectations this season. The Little Hoyas went 19-1, won an IAC title, and beat Landon twice to earn the Post’s final No. 1 ranking.

“We took it upon ourselves starting in the summer to be a really gritty team,” senior All-Met Player of the Year Charlie Horning said. “We wanted to make sure we gave it our all, make sure we did the little things right. This year, we all bought in and did a good job of pulling it together in the end.”

Horning, who led the Little Hoyas with 72 points, was one of 17 seniors on Prep’s team, a class loaded with Division I-bound talent and highly-touted four years ago. Along with fellow attackman Townsend Brown, midfielder Brendan Collins, defender Matt Billings and goalie Will Railey — among many others — Horning felt they finally lived up to their promise in 2014.

“Coming into senior year and winning a championship was the best feeling ever,” Horning said. “I was glad we were able to live up to everyone’s expectations of us.”

The Rams won their first lacrosse state championship since 2007, beating the Langley Saxons 9-7. The Bulldogs won their first lacrosse state championship in school history, defeating the rival Oakton,13-11. (Nick Plum for Synthesis/Koubaroulis LLC./The Washington Post)

The Little Hoyas were nearly perfect this spring, handling the WCAC’s best in Gonzaga and DeMatha, and knocking of MIAA-A powers Gilman and St. Paul’s. Though the “nearly” — an overtime loss to St. Alban’s in the regular season finale — stung, two wins over Landon and an IAC title lifted Prep back to its familiar perch atop the area lacrosse scene.

“Playing for Prep is definitely a lot of pressure, but I think it makes you a better player,” Horning said. “For the players who take that pressure and play and continue to perform well, they know when they go to college they’ll be prepared for anything. It makes you a better player to be in that situation for four years.”

As Prep reclaimed its IAC throne, Gonzaga maintained its hold on the WCAC’s despite the loss of several key seniors to graduation after the 2013 season. After starting the season 2-2, the Eagles charged through the rest of their schedule, finishing 16-5 as regular season and postseason WCAC champions.

South River also absorbed the loss of some of its most potent scorers from 2013 state runner-up squad to earn the 4A/3A title in 2014. With a stunningly stingy defense, the Seahawks went 17-2 in one of the state’s most loaded public school regions and beat Howard 9-6 for the state championship.

In Virginia, Robinson restored one of the state’s richest lacrosse traditions to prominence by winning the 6A state title. The Rams won 18 straight games to finish the season, including a 9-7 win over Langley in the state title game.

The Post Top 10

IAC runners up Landon turned in a typically strong season, losing only to Prep, Gonzaga, and Canada’s Hill Academy. . . . St. Mary’s-Annapolis emerged as a force in the MIAA-A with its best record since 2011. . . . Howard charged to the state title game unbeaten and won its first county title since 1991 before falling to South River in the championship. . . . Wootton rolled through the regular season with an average of more than 16 goals per game before falling to South River in state semifinals. . . . 5A runner-up Loudoun County’s only two losses came in overtime.

1. Georgetown Prep (19-1) LW: 1

2. Gonzaga (16-5) LW: 2

3. Landon (18-4) LW: 3

4. DeMatha (16-4) LW: 4

5. South River (17-2) LW: NR

6. St. Mary’s-Annapolis (11-6) LW: 5

7. Robinson (18-3) LW: NR

8. Howard (18-1) LW: 7

9. Wootton (17-1) LW: 6

10. Arundel (14-3) LW: 8

Also considered: Langley (15-7), Chantilly (15-2), Loudoun County (18-2)

Chelsea Janes covers high school sports for The Washington Post.
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