Boys Lacrosse: Steger stays staunch in Ramblers net
Palatine -Loyola Academy battles the Scouts of Lake Forest for the Class A state Lacrosse Championship hosted by Palatine High School. Jack Penn Loyola (left) is pressured by Lake Forest. | Joe Cyganowski~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: July 8, 2012 8:31AM
Kevin Steger covered more of the Palatine High School field after Loyola won the state championship Saturday than when the game was going on.
The senior is the Ramblers goalie and doesn’t need to venture very far from the cage.
But because of his career-defining performance, Steger was a hot commodity following the 6-4 victory over Lake Forest. He raced from interview to interview, and photo shoot to shoot.
Still, Steger also was able to celebrate the championship with teammates, an accomplishment long overdue for Loyola.
“Unreal,” the three-year varsity veteran said. “It hasn’t set in yet. All the hard work. This is such a great payoff.”
The win lifted Loyola to its first state championship since 2004 after finishing second six consecutive seasons, all to New Trier. The title was the program’s ninth overall and tied the Ramblers with the Trevians for the most in state history.
Senior defender Dylan Harris went crazy.
“Seeing those seconds going off the clock, I don’t even know what I was doing,” he said. “All I wanted was that trophy. This was for the alumni who didn’t have the chance to do this.”
Daniel O’Malley and Connor Person each scored two goals as top-seeded Loyola (17-5) never trailed in the state final.
With Loyola protecting a 6-4 advantage, Steger stabbed a shot at the 1:00 mark and allowed Loyola to run out the clock.
“He played the best game ever,” said four-year varsity player Dylan Brennan of his cousin. “That’s awesome for him. He was the reason we won. For him to play like that in his final game is awesome.”
Seniors Brendan Dowdle and Tim O’Connor also scored. The defense, anchored by Steger and Harris, remained stingy.
“It’s the deepest defense you’ll see,” Harris said. “Kevin played out of his mind, but we play as a team.”
“To finally win on the last day of my career, I can’t imagine any better feeling,” Brennan said. “We would be nothing without coach (Rob) Snyder and our athletic director Pat Mahoney. Getting coach this championship is the best feeling I’ve ever had.”