MARIEMONT, Ohio — There is plenty of anticipation at Mariemont High School for this weekend's state lacrosse finals at Ohio Wesleyan University's Selby Stadium.
The Mariemont boys and girls lacrosse teams will represent Greater Cincinnati in their respective Division II state championship games on Saturday.
The Mariemont girls team (18-3) is scheduled to play Rocky River at 10 a.m. The Mariemont boys team (15-5) is scheduled to play Chagrin Falls at 1 p.m.
This marks the first time the Mariemont boys and girls lacrosse teams have been in the state final four in the same year, according to athletic director Tom Nerl.
"In a small community like ours, any late season run is celebrated by the community," Nerl said in an email. "The community has such a strong lacrosse base with the youth program that was established years ago, that this time of year really gets everyone excited for the championships."
The Mariemont boys team is making its ninth trip to the state finals in program history, according to coach Steve Peterson. This will be the fourth time Mariemont has played Chagrin Falls in the state final.
The Mariemont girls team is making it second state final appearance, according to coach Kevin Ferry.
"For both of us to be in the finals at the same time has been really great," Ferry said.
Peterson said it's a neat aspect to this special weekend to have Mariemont represented in both state championships, especially with how much lacrosse is a fabric within the school community.
Mariemont also has Kiersten Souders competing in the 100-meter hurdles in the Division II state girls track and field meet this weekend at Pickerington North High School - another opportunity for a state title for the Cincinnati Hills League member.
Nerl said Mariemont had some excellent crowds this week for regional lacrosse and the community is anticipating an electric atmosphere at Selby Stadium.
"Folks have a little extra excitement having both teams there and playing back to back," Nerl said. "We'll be well represented on Saturday by our fan base."
Nerl credits the perseverance of everyone involved in athletics within the Mariemont High School community during this past year during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"To have these tournament runs on top of the boys soccer championship, the girls soccer regional runner-up, the boys cross country team going to state, girls cross country to the regional finals, the football team going to the regional semifinal, boys and girls basketball going to the district finals and sending 16 swimmers and divers to state has really been a phenomenal year considering the mess we started the year in last June," Nerl said.