WEST SPRINGFIELD -- They brought tournament experience, a championship pedigree and a trio of All-Americans into Tuesday's Division III state boys lacrosse state semifinal.
And that's why Dover-Sherborn earned the opportunity to play for a third straight Division III state title following a 17-6 triumph over Mount Greylock at Clark Field.
The Mounties may be a third-year program fresh off their first sectional championship, but they hardly looked like a team that was just happy to be there. Mount Greylock played hard despite being cast in the underdog role.
Mount Greylock, which beat Grafton 7-4 on Friday for the Central/Western Massachusetts title, closed at 20-4.
"When you play a team like Dover-Sherborn, you just have to pick your poison," Mounties coach Brandon Asplundh said. "We did our best until the floodgates opened."
The knockout punch was delivered early in the second quarter when the Raiders broke open a close game by scoring three goals in a span of 2:01 to move to a 6-1 lead. The Mounties never recovered.
It was no surprise that those goals came off the sticks of the Raiders' offensive All-Americans, Grant Gregory and Bailey Laidman, who combined for eight goals.
Gregory scored 20 seconds into second quarter to give Dover-Sherborn a 4-1 advantage and struck again 47 seconds later.
Laidman added his second goal of the game shortly after before he completed his hat trick with 6:49 left in the second quarter to give the Raiders a commanding 7-1 lead.
"No one could have stopped all of those shots and our goalie [Cal Filson, 11 saves] did a fantastic job."
Offense may get headlines, but defense wins championships and the Raiders did an outstanding job of keeping the Mounties' attack at bay. Another All-American, defenseman Rogers Boylan, stuck to Greylock's scoring star, Michael McCormack, like glue.
McCormack, who set a state record with 191 points this season, did manage to shake loose of Boylan and score four goals.
"We made too many mistakes and they outplayed us," McCormack said. "It was a tough game."
The good news for Greylock is nearly everyone is coming back, including McCormack. The Mounties lose only four seniors, Daivon Clement, Niko Santore, Cole Jackson and Alejandro Viquez-Salas to graduation. The future looks bright and the underclassmen will take valuable postseason experience into next season.
"I am very proud of our season," Asplundh said. "We were just outmatched. They are all athletic and very skilled."
The only teams to beat Dover-Sherborn (18-3) this season were Medfield, which did it twice, and Cohasset.
The Raiders showed how explosive they can be during the second quarter. Dover-Sherborn rode a six-goal second quarter to take a 9-2 halftime lead over Greylock.
It took only 1:22 for the Raiders to open the scoring. Tyler Man score unassisted followed by another goal without a helper by Laidman for a 2-0 edge.
A great individual effort by McCormack sliced the lead to 2-1 with 5:28 left in the period. But that's as close as the Mounties would come.
The Raiders ripped off the next six goals to take an 8-1 lead. McCormack answered for the Mounties with 3:11 remaining in the half, but Gregory got it back for the Raiders in the waning seconds.
Dover-Sherborn 17, Mount Greylock 6
Dover-Sherborn 3 3 4 7
Greylock 1 1 2 2
Dover-Sherborn goals: Mann 2, Laidman 4, Williams 2, Gregory 4, Spangenberg 3, Polk 1, Smith 1. Dover-Sherborn assists: Holt 2, Spangenberg 1, Gregory 2. Mount Greylock goals: M. McCormack 4, Jackson 1, Hughes 1. Greylock assists: Chenail 1.
Saves: DS -- Fontaine 2. MG -- Filson 11.