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With win over No. 9 Allen, the Dragons advance to Div. 1 playoffs to face St. Marks next Tuesday. 

With a large Senior Night crowd, including the Carroll Drum line, on hand, the Dragon High School boys took the field Wednesday night knowing their game against #9 Allen could be their last.  For the seven graduating Seniors, that idea was unacceptable and they stepped up to drive their team to a 10-8 playoff clinching win.

The leadership and effort from the Seniors was evident from the start with Allen’s goalie attempting to clear from behind his net. Senior Attackman Tim Barnhart hustled to successfully defend the pass, which he deflected to fellow Senior Bryce Wasserman who put it into the open net for an apparent first goal.  While the goal didn’t stand, the play was a foretelling of the team’s desire to extend the season.

After Allen scored the first goal, it was Barnhart who tied it shortly after and then Wasserman who tallied the go-ahead goal.  Senior Scott Dickey assisted on the third goal, scored by Wasserman’s younger brother, Freshman Casey Wasserman.

Still in the first quarter, the Dragons were rolling and Bryce Wasserman quickly had his second goal, and then a hat trick to put the Dragons up 5-1 before Allen scored their second goal.  Allen won the face off, taking it all the way and scored.  In a 15-second span Allen had closed to a 5-3 lead and also stunned the Dragon crowd.

A long laser-like shot from Junior Midfield Michael Cox brought the crowd back into the game, giving the Dragons a 6-3 lead.  The Eagles, also needing a win to extend their season, showed their determination, and scored with 5 seconds left in the half, and two additional goals to tie things up with 6:19 remaining in the third quarter.

The defensive effort for both teams, including Dragon Seniors Kenny Lear, Connor Harryman, Cooper Green, and Charley Compagnone grew in intensity. Coach Bart Sullivan, sensing the battle would go to the end, employed additional midfielders to allow his team to finish the game.  With a pressing midfield that expanded to include A.J. Van den Dyssel, Alex Barnes, Taylor Iniguez, Brennan Mollere and Zach Bach, the Dragons held the Eagles scoreless nearly a full quarters worth of time.

A Dragon penalty gave Allen a man advantage with under 9 minutes left.  Allen leveraged their extra man offense to take only their second lead at 7-6 with 8:46 remaining in the game. 

Concern was growing in the crowd until Sophomore Midfielder Dean DiBello finally ended the scoring drought with to his game tying goal.  Bryce Wasserman used a left-handed shot to regain the Dragon lead.  Barnhart followed shortly with his second of the night.  The 9-7 lead reignited the crowd as the Dragons gained possession and took a time out with 3:40 remaining in the contest.

Expecting that Coach Sullivan would instruct his team to maintain possession and milk the clock, the Allen defense pressed out.   This created an opening that Wasserman took full advantage of to score his fifth goal of the game and give the Dragons a more comfortable 10-7 lead.

Allen kept pushing until the end pressuring Freshman Goalie Luke Millican and his defense including Jack Welding, Nathan Beam, Brody Danel, and Nick Donfris.  While Allen would ultimately break through to score, it was with just eight seconds left, and the Dragons secured the 10-8 win.

The win lands the Dragons in the Northern Division THSLL Division I playoffs where they will travel to fourth-seeded St. Marks next Tuesday night.  The game will be played at 6:30 p.m. (10600 Preston Rd. Dallas, TX 75230) and will be a rematch of the April 2 game when St. Marks outlasted the Dragons earning a 9-7 win.

The North District is the most competitive in the state with seven teams ranked in the state’s Top 10.  Last night, state-ranked No. 2 Jesuit outscored No. 1-ranked Episcopal School of Dallas by an 11-7 score to capture the North District title.  Both teams ended the regular season with a 7-1 record.