DENVER — Every other year, Regis Jesuit shows its dominance. And after losing to Cherry Creek in last year's Class 5A state championship game, the Raiders were due.
They took an early lead in this year's game and never looked back, getting a 10-4 win over Kent Denver Friday night at Mile High Stadium.
"Following that, it was a brand new team, minus a few players," junior Jake Taylor said. "It was great motivation having new guys here and new guys leading."
It's the fourth state title for Regis Jesuit and its third since 2014.
The Raiders (18-1 overall) were hungry for this one. They struck 12 seconds into the game with Charlie Maly burying the shot to go up 1-0.
"Our philosophy has been to play fast all year," coach Jim Soran said. "We have a tremendous bunch of athletes on both sides of the ball so that's been our game plan is just to play fast."
The Sun Devils (15-4) tied the game up two and a half minutes later with a goal from Max Hewitt. And then Regis went on its run. Reed Babcock scored off a rebound and Anders Erickson connected on two consecutive goals to put the Raiders up 4-1 at halftime.
Kent Denver started the second half showing a little more life offensively, scoring back-to-back goals to cut the Regis lead to 5-3.
But after admittedly going into last year's state title game less prepared than they should've been, the Raiders weren't going to leave anything to chance. They scored four straight goals, capped off with a strike from Taylor to go up 9-3. Taylor led all Regis scorers with three goals. Erickson was right behind him with two.
It also helped that Matthew McCarthy wasn't letting much through and giving the Regis offense every opportunity to get the ball back and score. He finished the game with eight saves.
"It's all in my defense," McCarthy said. "They were walls today. They gave me great looks and great opportunities to save shots.
For Kent Denver, the season was significant in that it returned to the state championship game for the first time in seven years.
The Sun Devils haven't won a title since 2008, meaning they'll have to wait until at least next year to end that drought.
Regis now sits alone in third place all-time with four boys lacrosse championships. The Sun Devils have five while Cherry Creek has six.
Since 2014, Regis has had a habit of taking state every other year. Never in the team's history has it been able to rattle off consecutive state championships.
"I couldn't tell you why," McCarthy said. "I think it all comes down to seniors. I think if we have a great senior class it's going to happen and this year we did."
The lone loss on the season for the Raiders came to Torrey Pines on a trip out in California. That loss played just as much a factor in motivating the team as the loss a year ago to Cherry Creek did.
"Our one loss in California fueled us," McCarthy said. "And we did it, I'm just so happy right now."