Stranglehold doesn’t begin to describe the long-time state tournament dominance of Eden Prairie and Blake, as the two schools combined to capture each of the state's first 11 girls' lacrosse titles.
Apple Valley has the distinction of breaking that hold, knocking off Eden Prairie 11-10 for a stunning state championship victory back in 2018. Prior Lake repeated the feat in 2019, beating Eden Prairie 17-12 for the title.
Much has happened since the spring of 2019, including the cancelation of the 2020 season because of COVID-19 precautions. Meanwhile, Apple Valley has been bolstered by joining with Burnsville in a varsity co-op, and the team is off to a 3-1 start behind the scintillating play of Liberty commit Taiva Reinertson. The senior attacker has 21 goals this season, tied for second-most in the state.
Prior Lake, No. 2 in the coaches' rankings from April 20, opened the season with a 10-8 loss to No. 1 Edina on April 17 but has since won three straight, including Saturday’s 9-6 triumph over No. 6 Blake. Senior Payton Bloedow leads the Lakers (3-1) with 12 goals.