Knights lacrosse eyes third straight state title

Knights lacrosse aims for 3 peat

MISSOULA, Mont. - The high school lacrosse season is wrapping up this week with the state tournament in Whitefish.  Once again this year it's the Hellgate Knights who have earned the #1 seed.

"We're in a pretty comfortable position, but pretty familiar, said Hellgate head lacrosse coach Kevin Flynn.  "We've been used to playing at the top for the last few years and you know I think it's a testament to the kids just being focused on the end goal all year long."

"We just try to be the best team in the state and try to represent the state well, so being that number one seed means a lot," said Hellgate senior Duncan Szalda-Petree.

The Hellgate Knights lacrosse team continues to make history as the best team in the state, but with that title comes high expectations.

"I think it's hard to play with a target on your back," said Flynn.  "You do have to be focused every week because you know you're going to get and A game out of every opponent that you see."

"We have to go into each game expecting that they're going to be trying to take us out with as much as they can," said Hellgate junior Hudson Therriault.  "We've had a target on our back since the first year we started lacrosse in Montana."

"We know the target is on our back, we've done this before, we've been there, so I think it's all the same and we can definitely just handle it," said Szalda-Petree.

Having the pressure of being the team to beat is nothing new for the Knights who have won the state title the past two years.

"We want to win every game we play in no matter what, state tournament, regular season, all that kind of stuff we play every game to win," said Flynn.

"It's really expected of Hellgate to perform very well," said Therriault.

"There's a little bit of pressure because we are expected to win it you don't want to lose is the main thing," said Szalda-Petree.  "Just winning it every year has become really important."

Hellgate will take on either Missoula Sentinel or Billings Skyview in the first round of action on Saturday in Whitefish.

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