Bishop Ireton's Katlin Luzik, left, and Kelly Matthews, right, pictured during the WCAC final, led the Cardinals past No. 1 St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes in Saturday’s VISAA championship. (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

Bishop Ireton staged a spirited rally to surge past top-ranked St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes and claim the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association championship on Saturday with a 9-7 victory.

The second-ranked Cardinals, who rallied from a three-goal deficit with seven minutes to play in their semifinal against Collegiate to earn a title-game berth, completed a similarly dramatic comeback at Collegiate School in Richmond. Down four goals in the first half and two at the half, Ireton tied the game midway through the second half, then went back and forth with the ISL AA champion Saints until the game’s final minutes.

“The bottom line was we had heart, the girls had a lot of heart,” Ireton Coach Rick Sofield said. “At a couple points, it looked like the wheels were going to fall off, but the girls hung in there. There were so many individual efforts it was incredible. Before the game, we talked about our mantra – you don’t have to make big plays, just little plays – and there were so many kids making those little plays all over the field.”

With just under 10 minutes to play, Charlotte Sofield fed Kayla Duperrouzel to put the Cardinals up 8-7, and four minutes later, Kelly Larkin fed Kelly Mathews for insurance. When time ran out, the Cardinals (20-4) had added a VISAA championship to their Washington Catholic Athletic Conference title to wrap up the best season in school history.

The second-ranked Cardinals dominated the third-ranked Good Counsel Falcons by a score of 17-7, while the second-ranked Eagles soared past St. John's Cadets for a final score of 16-6. (Andrew Kloc for Synthesis/Koubaroulis LLC./The Washington Post)

“The girls have been working on this for 11 months. On our t-shirts, it says ‘it’s not an accident,’ and what we’re saying is we’re working hard, we’re earning this,” Sofield said. “It’s not just that we got lucky for a couple of games. We worked hard to put ourselves in a position to take advantage of opportunities, and that’s what they did.”. . .

The St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes boys won a second-straight VISAA championship with a 10-8 victory over St. Christopher’s at Randolph Macon College in Ashland. . . .

In the Division II girls’ final, top-seeded Foxcroft defeated Norfolk Collegiate, 18-13.