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Red Knights lacrosse takes third state title in four years

Red Knights lacrosse takes third state title in four years
  • Athletics
  • Senior High School

The BSM boys’ lacrosse team played through rainswept conditions on Saturday, June 15 to defeat Lakeville North (18-10), capturing the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) Class A state title. It’s the Red Knights’ third state championship in boys’ lacrosse over the past four years.

For senior Gus Bell and the members of the Class of 2024, the state title reflects their commitment to excellence, “As Red Knights, we have to be the best on and off the field no matter what is happening.” Despite the poor weather, Bell lived by that adage, giving the team a three-goal lead early in the first quarter.

The Class A boys' lacrosse State Champion Red Knights

The boys kept the pressure on until the very end, showing their determination and strength. “The entire team bought into our philosophy this season,” said Giuseppe Palermo, head coach. “Overall, this season, we had a very special group that was led by a great class of seniors. They played their best lacrosse at the end of the year.”

Over the last four seasons, the BSM boys’ lacrosse team has a combined record of 73-3 and hasn’t lost at home since 2017. As student athletes, the team is academically strong with many players having a 3.8 or higher gpa and a number of them are academic All-Americans.

Palermo notes that the team-first approach is something the boys have worked on and honed throughout the season. “They want to do good and care about each other as teammates and friends,” he explained, “The boys took ownership of the season, so that they were being leaders to one another, and that brought the team together.”

The BSM lacrosse coaches used a FROGS acronym to convey what it means to be part of the team:

  • Forward – take first step forward
  • Response – everyone has a reaction, what’s more important is how we respond (when great or not great,
  • One – doing things together as one family
  • Good – adversity strikes, good. Hurting, good. Rain, good. Get to work
  • Selflessness – it speaks to itself, doing for others before doing for self

After losing in the semifinal round of the 2023 State Tournament, the boys wanted to return to the championship game. “They were hungry and determined to not let what happened last year, happen again,” Palermo said.

Bell was this year’s #9 Leadership award winner. The award, named in honor of former BSM lacrosse player Matt Hoff a member of the class of 2006 who died in 2008, is presented to the player who exemplifies what it means to be a Red Knight – a leader on and off the field. Bell took last year’s defeat in the playoffs to heart. “Losing in the state semifinals the previous year was the main driver for us. Everyone knows their role on the team which allowed us to be successful in everything we did as a team this year.”

At the conclusion of the championship game, Bell, Sky Rold '24, Axel Esco '24, and Riley Murphy '24 were named to the All-Tournament team. 

Throughout the season, the hard work and effort was recognized by members of the BSM community. Both team alums and former coaches supported the team as they competed in match play. And after the state title game, Palermo heard from Colin Mulcahy, the first lacrosse coach at BSM. “I played against Coach Mulcahy’s team when I was a high school student at Totino-Grace, so it means a lot to have his support and the support of others who started the program here at BSM.”

Another state title only encourages the team to keep playing with heart and passion. While Bell and the other members of the senior class head off to college, the coaches and remaining players are already excited about next year. Palermo said, “Lacrosse will never hit as hard as life – but the game helps us remember to stay steady through the good moments and work through the adversity. A state championship proves our plan and approach works – it also reminds us to work through the ups and downs, learning and growing to be prepared for life.”

In related news, Gus Bell ’24 was named Mr. Lacrosse for the state of Minnesota. Fellow Red Knights, Julia Evens ’24 was named Ms. Lacrosse in the state, while Sky Rold ’24 and Maggie Graczyk ’24 were named Mr & Ms. Lacrosse runners-up for 2024.

Mr. & Ms. Lacrosse goalie runners up were Axel Esco ’24 and Grace Ortizcazarin ’24.

Congratulations to all of our Red Knight lacrosse players on another amazing season. We are BSMproud of their achievements on and off the field.


Photos courtesy Brennan Schachtner Photography and Mack Morrow Photography
  • Championship
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About Benilde-St. Margaret's School
Benilde-St. Margaret's (BSM) is a Catholic, co-educational private prep school for grades 7–12 located in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, that draws its over one thousand students from throughout the Twin Cities Metro Area. It is located in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.

The mission of BSM is to educate, empower, and inspire learners within a Catholic community to lead lives of faith, achieve academic excellence, and contribute meaningfully to a global society.

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