McCabe Millon wins it in OT!
— NLF (@natlaxfed) May 16, 2023
Another Boys’ Latin-McDonogh MIAA playoff game, another instant classic. For the second straight year, the Eagles got the win thanks to heroics from a Millon.
In 2022, it was Brendan Millon who tallied a controversial last-second goal to push McDonogh into the MIAA championship game. The Eagles then rolled past St. Mary’s to put a chrome orange tint on the championship trophy.
This time, it was time for Millon’s older brother, McCabe, to break the Lakers’ hearts. The NLF’s No. 1 senior, a Virginia signee, got the ball in overtime and wasn’t going to let the game go on any longer. Millon found himself up top and called his own number, dancing to his left before uncorking a bardown rip with his off-hand Tuesday night at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
Game, blouses. McDonogh 8, Boys’ Latin 7, and the Eagles made sure they’ll have an opportunity to defend their title Friday night at Loyola University. McDonogh will square off against Calvert Hall, the last team to repeat as champions – the Cardinals did it three times in a row from 2017-2019 – after Calvert Hall downed Loyola Blakefield, 11-8, in the other semifinal.
Back and Forth Affair
“I’ve been lucky enough to have a bunch of really awesome moments, but this one’s gotta be really high up there,” Millon said. “Having this be the last time playing on this field in the MIAA semis and try to fight to get one more day with my teammates, it really means so much to have been able to put one in.”
“It was pretty sick,” five-star senior LSM Mac Christmas said with a laugh.
The game had just about everything you’d expect from a battle of teams who seemingly play each other in the playoffs every year. McDonogh raced out to a 5-0 lead, highlighted by a pair of tallies from four-star sophomore Bogue Hahn, yet there never seemed to be any panic from the Lakers. They chipped away at the lead, finally tying it up when four-star senior Jackson Walsh and four-star junior Parker Hoffman scored 10 seconds apart with 8:46 to play. Walsh had a great look at a game-winner with less than 10 seconds to play, but sophomore goalie Aidan Seibel came up with the biggest save of his young McDonogh career to push the game to the extra frame.
Freelance Has Eagles Flying High
Hoffman won the overtime faceoff and the Lakers got a look, but Seibel was up to the task again with a stop. McDonogh’s first look, one of its favorites where Millon comes off a high screen to get a pass from Luke Miller at X and then takes a stepdown, never materialized. Millon then went a little off-script and finished the latest chapter in one of the best playoff rivalries in the country.
“Credit to (the Lakers),” Millon added. “They ran a really good zone, going in and out of it and trying to confuse us. They were doing a really good job of it. We run a bunch of different zone sets and haven’t really gotten good looks out of them. We went with a little quick-hitter play. I was trying to get a stepdown on that right side and they covered it up pretty well. So we were just freelancing and seeing if there were any gaps, seeing if that top guy wasn’t going to come across and help fast enough. I was just able to get a shot off.”
Back-to-Back for the Eagles?
All of that means another shot at a title for McDonogh. There have only been two repeat champions since the turn of the century, with the Calvert Hall three-peat and back-to-back titles from Loyola Blakefield in 2007 and 2008.
“I’m just speechless, really,” senior faceoff specialist Zach Hayashi said. “This is a great rivalry in the playoffs. It’s, like, every single year we play them in the playoffs. Hats off to them. They had an incredible season. We just wanted three more days with each other and that was our biggest goal going into this game. We earned practice No. 49 and practice No. 50. There’s just no better feeling.”
There certainly will be if they can run it back tonight.
Boys’ Latin vs. McDonogh Standouts
Mac Christmas ’23, LSM, McDonogh / MadLax / Duke
Look up on a faceoff against McDonogh and you’ll see a pair of towering poles in Christmas and five-star running mate AJ Marsh (Crabs / Navy). Turns out double-poling with two 6-4 guys with terrific stickwork is a good idea. Who knew? Both excelled for the Eagles against the Lakers, and Christmas corralled more than his fair share of ground balls. The future Blue Devil is so impactful in the middle of the field, whether it’s with just his presence to intimidate opponents or when he’s taking the ball away with his timely checks. If the ball’s on the ground, it’s his. His long running strides allow him to push the pace in transition. A senior transfer from Georgetown Prep (Md.), Christmas has been a vital piece of the Eagles’ run back to the MIAA title game.
“It was a sick game. It was awesome,” Christmas said. “I couldn’t have imagined that atmosphere. McCabe hit that shot and I’ve never been happier.”
Zach Hayashi ’23, faceoff midfield, McDonogh / Crabs / Navy
The future Midshipman put on a show on his future home field with a 13-for-20 day in a back-and-forth battle with junior four-star North Carolina commit Parker Hoffman (Eclipse). Hayashi looks like what you’d expect out of a Navy faceoff man. While he’s not overly tall, he’s got a rocked up, muscular body and plays with good leverage, which allows him to stay low and make everything a scrap. Hoffman has some of the fastest hands of any faceoff man in the country, but Hayashi was able to counter that speed with quick hands of his own and a lot of power. He’s very comfortable with having Christmas and Marsh on the wings – really, who wouldn’t be? Have you SEEN these guys? – and he did a terrific job of moving the ball around for them to help him out.
“They’re unbelievable,” Hayashi said. “Mac, AJ, all the wings, they make my job so easy. I just have to put the ball on the ground and they’re right in there. We talked about it going in. Parker had an amazing game in the quarterfinal. He had, like, five goals accounted for from faceoffs. Our biggest goal was limiting transition. Even though they got one (on an unbelievable individual effort from Hoffman), I feel like we did a great job of that. It’s our poles and our wings that did that.”
Connor Schoenwetter ’24, midfield, Boys’ Latin / Crabs / Marquette
You have to admire what Schoenwetter brings to the table as a SSDM who can get up and down the field and make things happen in transition. A tall, lanky athlete who still has a lot of room to grow physically, Schoenwetter excels in the clearing game and plays a hard, smart, effective game on the defensive end of the field. Marquette always does very well in recruiting the MIAA, and Schoenwetter projects as a player who could make a significant impact at the next level.
Aidan Seibel ’25, goalie, McDonogh / Team 91 Maryland
It’s quite a statement, but unlikely to be hyperbolic to say that Seibel made one of the biggest saves in McDonogh history with his 10-bell save on Jackson Walsh in the dying seconds of regulation. The Boys’ Latin sniper got a clean look from seven yards or so, and the Eagles’ young netminder never even blinked in making a ridiculous kick save with his left foot to send the ball to the corner and the game to overtime. In the extra frame, he denied the Lakers’ lone look to get the ball back to set up McCabe Millon’s winner.
“We knew we were on our heels there and I knew I had to make a stop,” said Seibel, who made 11 saves. “When he got fed the ball, I just trusted my instincts and I trusted our defense and wound up coming up with a big save. I owe that all to my defense and teammates for making that save. I was sitting on it a bit. (Walsh) usually drops his hands and shoots low. Watching film on him definitely helped. He doesn’t usually go high when he drops his stick, so I just trusted my instincts and my reflexes and got the big-time save.”
Seibel has carved out a reputation for himself as one of the best ’25 goalies in the country – look for him to be pretty high in next week’s rankings – but doing it at this level in the MIAA is something else. He took over the starting job at halftime of McDonogh’s loss to Loyola earlier this year and never looked back.
“That was one of the best goalie performances I’ve ever seen,” Christmas said.
Jackson Walsh ’23, midfield, Boys’ Latin / Crabs / Ohio State
The future Buckeye was the offensive show for the Lakers, pocketing a hat trick and setting up George Insley for a goal. A terrific shooter out of the midfield, Walsh showed some versatility on his goals. He beat his man on off-ball cut to finish a nice pass from NLF No. 3 junior Spencer Ford, scored on a dodge down the alley and then blasted home a Tyler Owings pass on the wing. Walsh’s stock has steadily risen in the past year, first after helping the Crabs to the NLF national championship at Lehigh and in a great senior campaign for the Lakers. His goal-scoring ability should help him get on the field in Columbus.
McDonogh 8, Boys’ Latin 7
Jackson Walsh ’23 (Crabs / Ohio State) 3 goals, 1 assist
George Insley ’24 (Crabs) 2 goals
Tyler Owings ’23 (Crabs / Delaware) 1 goal, 1 assist
Parker Hoffman ’24 (Eclipse / North Carolina) 1 goal
Spencer Ford ’24 (Crabs / Maryland / NLF No. 3 ’24) 1 assist
Dylan Cadigan ’23 (Crabs / Monmouth) 11 saves
McCabe Millon ’23 (Team 91 Maryland / NLF No. 1 ’23) 3 goals
Bogue Hahn ’25 (Team 91 Maryland) 2 goals
Luke Miller ’24 (Notre Dame/ NLF No. 68 ’24) 1 goal, 1 assist
Brendan Millon ’25 (Team 91 Maryland / NLF ’25 five-star) 1 goal
Ben Firlie ’24 (Team 91 Maryland / Georgetown) 1 goal
Aidan Seibel ’25 (Team 91 Maryland) 11 saves